The Providence Mandolin Orchestra is (very) pleased to announce the following free concert:
The Providence Mandolin Orchestra
1825 Broad Street
Sunday, April 29, 3 PM
Mark Davis, Director
The King of Denmark's Galliard John Dowland (1563-1626)
The Earl of Essex Galliard
(Robert Margo, lutenist)
Concerto for Mandolin and
Zupforchester, op.4,no. 6, HWV 294 G. F. Handel (1685-1759)
(Joshua Bell, mandolinist) (arr. Tober-Vogt)
Groove #1 Owen Hartford
Impressioni Orientali, op. 132 Raffaele Calace (1863-1934)
Three Movements for Mandolin Orchestra Francine Trester
Concerto per orchestra a pizzico Victor Kioulaphides
By Robert A. Margo
In the spring of 1604 John Dowland returned to England to publish Lachrimae, or Seaven Teares Figured in Seaven Passionate Pavans, with Divers other Pavans, Galiards, and Almands, Set Forth for the Lute, Viols, or Violons, in Five Parts. Prior to his return Dowland had been employed by the King of Denmark who was infamous throughout Europe for his drunken revels, which the music aptly captures. “Lachrimae Antiquae” is a consort setting of Dowland’s “greatest hit” known as “Flow My Tears” in the version for lute song. The Essex galliard also existed as a song, “Can She Excuse,” a man’s bitter lament of his beloved’s refusal to acknowledge his amorous intentions. The man in question, Robert Devereux, the Earl of Essex, was beheaded in 1601 for his failed plot to overthrow Elizabeth I. The lute part in this performance for plucked string ensemble is based on Dowland’s original with ornamentation and divisions added on repeats. Dowland’s timeless melodies have inspired countless musicians, including most recently the British pop star Sting whose recording “Songs from the Labyrinth”, a collection of Dowland’s lute songs was the best-selling classical CD last year.
During the baroque and early classical eras the mandolin enjoyed a brief spurt of popularity and a substantial quantity of music was composed for the instrument, some by Europe’s greatest composers including Beethoven, Mozart, and Vivaldi. Handel also wrote one original work using the mandolin, the aria “Hark! Hark! Hark! He Strikes the Golden Lyre” in the oratorio Alexander Balus. Originally for harp, the solo part in HWV 294 lays well on the mandolin’s fingerboard in this delightful adaptation for plucked string ensemble by Elke Tober-Vogt.
By the mid nineteenth century the mandolin had fallen into disuse in European art music. A revival ensued in the late nineteenth century, and the instrument became one of the most widely played in the Old and New Worlds. Virtuosos burst on the scene, tutors written, ensembles of all sizes and types formed, and vast quantities of music published. The greatest of all the early twentieth century mandolinists was the Italian Raffaele Calace, a “triple threat” who composed numerous pieces, performed widely and also personally constructed some of the finest instruments of the era. Written in February of 1925 during a sea voyage on return from a highly successful concert tour of Japan “Impressioni Orientali” is, in the words of Paul Sparks, author of The Classical Mandolin, “a wonderfully exciting and atmospheric piece strongly influenced by Middle Eastern scales and drones that creates an extraordinary range of timbre” (p. 145).
The Providence Mandolin Orchestra has long maintained an active program of commissioning new works for mandolin orchestra and of performing works commissioned by other ensembles. Owen Hartford has written numerous pieces over his long tenure with the Orchestra. Drawing its melodic, harmonic, and rhythmic cues from a mixture of minimalism and popular music, Hartford’s “Groove #1” receives its world premiere in this performance. Francine Trester is Associate Professor of Composition at the Berklee School of Music in Boston. A prolific and gifted composer for voice, piano, guitar and other instruments, and a virtuoso violinist herself, Trester has been the recipient of numerous awards and commissions, and her music has been performed throughout the world. “Three Movements” is her first composition to feature mandolin family instruments. Today’s concert closes with a remarkable new work, Victor Kioulaphides’ “Concerto per orchestra a pizzico”, composed for the prominent Dutch ensemble Het Consort and given its United States premiere in February 2006 by the Providence Mandolin Orchestra. This July the PMO will host the Het Consort and the two groups will perform together in recital in Providence.
The Providence Mandolin Orchestra was founded by the late Hibbard Perry in 1971. Since then, it has become one of the leading American mandolin ensembles, with regular appearances throughout the Eastern United States, Canada, and Western Europe. With well over two hundred pieces in its repertoire, the Orchestra features a wide range of musical styles from Renaissance dances to Baroque concertos, turn-of-the-century nostalgia, and avant-garde expressions. The group’s unique tonality has inspired exciting new works by Clarice Assad, Will Ayton, Owen Hartford, Eva Kendrick, Barbara Kolb, Robert Martel, Michael Nix, Stephen Funk Pearson, Francine Trester, and many others. The Providence Mandolin Orchestra is under the direction of Mark Davis. Mr. Davis pursues an active career as a solo and ensemble performer, educator, and conductor. Mark Davis directs a multi-level guitar ensemble program at the Wheeler School in Providence RI.
The Providence Mandolin Orchestra gratefully acknowledges the support of the D’Addario Foundation.
Performers: The Providence Mandolin Orchestra
Director: Mark Davis
First Mandolin: Joshua Bell (concertmaster), Michael Cappelli, Yvette Cote, Chang Lee
Second Mandolin: Lynne Bell, Chris Capaldi, Antonia Carlyon, Owen Hartford, Rachel Panitch, Lisa Topakian, Paul Wilde
Tenor Mandola: Mack Johnston, Will Melton, Gayle Raposa
Octave Mandola: Robert Margo
Renaissance Lute, 8-course, in G: Robert Margo
Mandocello: Duane Golomb, Dan Moore, Matt Synder
Classical Guitar: Mark Armstrong, Christine Chito, Beverly Davis
Mandobass: Gino Cicchetti, Dave Parr