RI Philharmonic and Providence Singers Offer Mozart’s Requiem

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The Rhode Island Philharmonic Orchestra welcomes guest conductor Bramwell Tovey to the podium on October 15, with a concert featuring Mozart’s Requiem with Providence Singers. The program also features Tchaikovsky’s Francesca da Rimini. The concert is Saturday, October 15 at 8:00pm, with a Rush Hour concert Friday, October 14 at 6:30pm. For the first time ever, hear the RI Philharmonic and Providence Singers proclaim the genius of Mozart’s deathbed composition, Requiem, as it develops swiftly and vanishes all too soon. You won’t want to miss it!


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MOZART’S REQUIEM WITH PROVIDENCE SINGERS

TACO Classical Concert Series
Saturday, October 15 at 8:00pm
The VETS, Providence, RI

Bramwell Tovey, guest conductor
Providence Singers
Christine Noel, Artistic Director

TCHAIKOVSKY Francesca da Rimini

MOZART Requiem 

AMICA Rush Hour Concert
Friday October 14 at 6:30pm
The VETS, Providence, RI

MOZART Requiem 

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About Bramwell Tovey

“One of the most versatile and charismatic musicians in the world” (Musical America), Grammy Award-winning conductor/composer Bramwell Tovey is Music Director of the Vancouver Symphony Orchestra and Artistic Adviser of the VSO School of Music. His tenure has included complete symphony cycles of Beethoven, Mahler and Brahms and an annual contemporary music festival.

  • Conductor: Last season’s guest appearances included the symphonies of Montreal, Melbourne, New Zealand, Pacific Symphony and the Philadelphia Orchestra and New York Philharmonic. Tovey has worked with leading choirs including Los Angeles Master Chorale, Tanglewood Festival Chorus, Toronto Mendelssohn Choir, Melbourne Symphony Chorus and Pacific Chorale, in a wide range of repertoire from Bach and Britten to Part and Penderecki.
  • Composer: In 2003 Mr. Tovey won the Juno Award for Best Classical Composition for his choral and brass work Requiem for a Charred Skull. Commissions include the New York and Los Angeles philharmonics, the Toronto Symphony and Calgary Opera which premiered his first full-length opera The Inventor in 2011.
  • Pianist: He has appeared as soloist with many major orchestras including the New York, Sydney, Melbourne, Los Angeles, Pittsburgh, St. Louis, Toronto, and Royal Scottish orchestras.

Providence Singers celebrates the choral art through concerts of masterworks and contemporary works, creative collaborations, recordings of American choral treasures, new music commissions and education programs. Collaborators include Rhode Island Philharmonic, the Dave Brubeck Quartet, Kronos Quartet at the FirstWorks Festival, Boston Modern Orchestra Project, the New Haven Symphony, New Bedford Symphony, Aurea Ensemble and Boston Landmarks Orchestra.

Christine Noel, Artistic Director of Providence Singers, has conducted the RI Philharmonic and the Singers in Handel’s Messiah, and the Singers in Vivaldi’s Gloria, Mozart’s Coronation Mass and Bach’s Cantata 140. She prepared the Singers for performances of Beethoven’s Symphony No. 9, Holst’s The Planets, Orff’s Carmina burana, and Mahler’s Symphony No. 3 with the RI Philharmonic. She is Director of Choral Activities at Clark University. She is Founder and Artistic Director of the RI Children’s Chorus, an award-winning choral organization for youth which serves children age seven to 18, offering six performance ensembles. An active festival clinician and adjudicator, she holds a Master of Music and a Doctor of Musical Arts in Conducting from Boston University. She studied at the Università degli Studi di Firenze and the Kodály Institute of Music in Kecskemét, Hungary. 

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About the concert: stories behind the music

Francesca da Rimini, op.32
Peter Ilyich Tchaikovsky
(1840-1893)

Star-crossed lovers: 14th-century Italian lovers Paolo and Francesca are immortalized in Dante’s Inferno. Sadly for them, Francesca was married to Paolo’s brother, who was not amused and killed them both. Tchaikovsky used their story in a programmatic orchestral “fantasy.” Audiences and most critics were enthusiastic, some saying that this was his best orchestral work yet. He wrote, “I have worked at it with love, and the love, I believe, has been quite successful.”

Requiem, k.626
Wolfgang Amadeus Mozart
(1756-1791)

Origin of the story: The Requiem’s story is worthy of stage and screen; indeed, it inspired Peter Schaffer’s Amadeus. In 1791, Mozart accepted a commission to compose a Requiem Mass. Mozart was ill: could he have suspected that it would be his last work? According to Mozart’s widow, Constanze, a “grey messenger” appeared at Mozart’s door one night bearing an unsigned commissioning letter and some money as down payment for a Requiem Mass. Due to The Magic Flute and other commitments that year, Mozart had to wait until November to begin work on the Requiem. The specter of this visitor haunted Mozart during his last days.

Deathbed composition: Toward the end of November, Mozart grew so ill he was confined to bed. Nothing could deter him from trying to complete the Requiem, which would bring Constanze a little money after he was gone. Constanze’s sister wrote that on the day before Mozart’s death, “There was Süssmayr [Mozart’s student and friend] by Mozart’s bed, the well-known Requiem lay on the coverlet, and Mozart was explaining to him how in his opinion he should complete it after his death.”

All programs and artists are subject to change without notice.

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