Yoel Levi Conducts Beethoven’s 6th and Popular Arias

יואל לוי

Date

16.5.2018

Wednesday 20:00

Hall

Lowy Concert Hall

Venue

Charles Bronfman Auditorium, Tel Aviv

Venue

Charles Bronfman Auditorium, Tel Aviv

Hall

Lowy Concert Hall

Artists

Yoel Levi, conductor 

Tea Demurishvili, mezzo-soprano 

Concert Program

Verdi: Overture to La forza del destino

Bizet: Excerpts from “Carmen” Suites No. 1 and 2

Bizet: Habanera from Carmen

Verdi: Azucena’s arias from Il trovatore

Verdi: Eboli’s aria from Don Carlos

Beethoven: Symphony no. 6 (“Pastoral”)

Event Info

The orchestra is excited to host conductor Yoel Levi again and Mezzo-Soprano Tea Demurishvili.
When the genre of bel canto operas was extinct and Wagner's modern operas began to rock the musical world, Verdi wrote the opera La Forza del Destino, which he considered as the "first of his modern operas".
The first performances in St. Petersburg in November 1862, as well as the first ones in Italy, were not very successful, mainly due to the opera's unusual length, as well as its bloody ending. In order to make it more popular, Verdi revised the opera in 1868-9. In the second version some of the scenes were rearranged. In addition, the long famous overture, played tonight, was written. In the period between the two versions of La Forza Verdi wrote the opera Don Carlo. The development of Verdi's style during that time is noticeable in this impressive piece, Verdi's best known overture.

Carmen, Bizet's last work, caused a major furor following its premiere at the Opéra Comique. The critics and the audience were appalled by Bizet's "daring", which was reflected, according to them, in his audacity to present on stage such immodest and immoral behavior as a heroine who declares openly that "none of her love affairs lasts more that six months". Although the music sounds Spanish, it is Bizet's original creation. He evokes the typical local spirit with very little use of authentic Spanish melodies. The story takes place in and near Seville, in the south of Spain.
Near the cigarette factor soldiers, workers, citizens and childreny stroll about. Carmen, a beautiful, hot-blooded gipsy, works in the cigarette factory. She and her co-workers are like a lodestone for the men of the local cavalry regiment. Carmen shamelessly flirts with Don José, and sings (after a melody by the Spanish composer Sebastian Iradier) the lilting Habanera (an ancient Spanish-Cuban dance rhythm) about the frivolity of love ("Love is a rebellious bird").

Composed in 1867 after Schiller's drama, and revised in 1884, Don Carlo is a transitional work between the "melodious" and "dramatic" Verdi. The plot depicts the tragic love of Don Carlo, heir to the Spanish throne, and the daughter of the King of France, Elisabeth de Valois, who is married to Don Carlo's father, King Philip, against her will. Princess Eboli is also in love with Carlo, but when he rejects her advances, Eboli realizes where the prince’s true feelings lie and swears to expose him. She betrays her Queen and friend, informing King Philip of the love between his wife and his son. The King imprisons his son, much to the sorrow of Eboli. In retaliation, Elizabeth gives Princess Eboli the choice of being exiled or becoming a nun. In her aria, O don fatale (O terrible gift, o cruel gift), Eboli curses the gift of beauty that she has been given, saying that it has been the cause of all her problems. She swears to save Carlo from the imprisonment that has resulted from her betrayal.

Il Trovatore is the second of three operas written by Verdi at the beginning of the 1850's, works that ultimately turned him into the greatest Italian opera composer of his time (the other two are Rigoletto and La Traviata).
The protagonists of Il Trovatore are driven by one passion from the beginning of the opera to its end: Count di Luna is madly in love with Leonora and is ready to abandon his men for her, when he comes to kidnap her from the monastery and confronts Manrico's men. Leonora is totally given to Manrico and sacrifices first her position and comfortable life in court, and eventually her own life for him. Manrico is torn between his love for Leonora and his love, of erotic nature, for the woman he believes to be his mother, Azucena. The latter, Verdi's most unique contribution to the repertoire of operatic characters, is, in turn, torn between the wish to avenge her mother's death and her love for her adopted son, Manrico.

Beethoven was a great Nature lover and preferred solitude in the countryside to the company of people. One of his English friends wrote: "...Never have I met another person whom flowers or clouds make so happy!"
Composing did not come easily to Beethoven. While walking in fields and woods, he would carry a small notebook and a pencil in his pocket, and each time a musical idea occurred to him, he would write it down. Later, at home, he would copy it onto a music sheet, but until this or that idea reached its final stage, it underwent numerous metamorphoses.
The sixth symphony, "Pastoral", indeed was inspired by Nature, which he loved so much, and written while Beethoven was spending the summers of 1807 and 1808 in the town of Heiligenstadt. The symphony deals with simple rural joys and with Nature's beauty, as well as with its wild and stormy side. Yet, it is not a programmatic work with exact descriptions of Nature such as The Four Seasons by Vivaldi. It is more the composer's musical impression of Nature and the landscape. On the first page of the programme booklet for the premiere on 22 December 1808 in Vienna, Beethoven wrote: "Pastoral Symphony, or Recollection of Life in the Countryside (more an expression of feelings than painting)". As he himself said: "Painting carried too far in instrumental music loses its effect". Nevertheless, to each of its five movements he appended a descriptive subtitle, suggesting its content.
Beethoven, the greatest innovator of symphonic structure at the beginning of the nineteenth century, influenced all the composers who followed him. One of his innumerable innovations is seen in this enchanting symphony: it is the only one in which he deviated from the traditional formula of the four-movement symphony, adding a fifth one.

Price Range

180-550 nis

Duration

approx. 90 minutes including intermission

Duration

approx. 90 minutes including intermission

Price range

180-550 nis

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