Tryon Concert Association Presents

The Chamber Music Society of Lincoln Center

Tuesday, October 8, 2019

7:30 p.m.


Tryon Concert Association dedicates its 65th anniversary season

to the memory of Joella Utley.  Joella was a dedicated member of the board,

generous benefactor, esteemed colleague, exemplar in the writing of program notes, and good friend.



Southland Sketches for Violin and Piano

I. Andante (1866-1949)
II. Adagio ma non troppo
III. Allegretto grazioso
IV. Allegro


Harry T. Burleigh (1866-1949)

Quintet in E-flat major, Op. 97

I. Allegro ma non tanto
II. Allegro vive
III. Larghetto
IV. Finale: Allegro giusto


Antonín Dvořák    (1841-1904)


Sonata for Clarinet and Piano

I. Grazioso – Un poco piu mosso
II. Andantino – Vivace e leggiere


Leonard Bernstein (1918-1990)

Appalachian Spring Suite for Ensemble

I. Very slowly
II. Fast
III. Moderate
IV. Quite fast
V. Still faster
VI. Very slowly
VII. Calm and flowing
VIII. Moderate. Coda


Aaron Copland (1900-1990)

The Chamber Music Society of Lincoln Center appears by
arrangement with DAVID ROWE ARTISTS.

A footnote on applause: The spirit and beauty of the music will be enhanced for both the performer and the audience by saving your applause until the completion of the last movement of each composition.

Note on the Artists

Under the leadership of Co-Artistic Directors David Finckel and Wu Han, the Chamber Music Society of Lincoln Center (CMS) is recognized as one of the finest chamber music organizations in the world. CMS presents a wide variety of concert series and educational events that appeal to both connoisseurs and newcomers to chamber music.

CMS performs chamber music of every instrumentation, style, and historical period. Annual activities include a full season in New York, national and international tours, broadcasts of PBS’s Live From Lincoln Center, and regular broadcasts on SiriusXM and American Public Media’s Performance Today.

The thirteen musicians performing in tonight’s concert include David Finckel on cello. His multifaceted career as concert performer, artistic director, recording artist, educator, and cultural entrepreneur distinguishes him as one of today’s most influential classical musicians. Nicholas Canellakis, also on cello, has become one of the most sought-after and innovative cellists of his generation. Anthony Manzo, on double bass, is much in demand; he performs at noted venues such as Lincoln Center and the Spoleto Festival in Charleston, South Carolina.

American violinist Chad Hoopes is a consistent and versatile performer with many of the world’s leading orchestras since winning First Prize at the Young Artists Division of the Yehudi Menuhin International Violin Competition. Kristin Lee is a violinist of remarkable versatility and impeccable technique who enjoys a vibrant career as a soloist, recitalist, chamber musician, and educator. Violinist Arnaud Sussman’s technique has been described as reminiscent of Jascha Heifetz or Fritz Kreisler, “a rare combination of sweet and smooth that can hypnotize a listener” (Pioneer Press). The fourth violinist of this ensemble, Angelo Xiang Yu, is a recipient of a 2019 Avery Fisher Career Grant and was awarded First Prize in the 2010 Yehudi Menuhin Competition.

Violist Matthew Lipman, also an Avery Fisher career grant recipient, has been hailed by the New York Times for his “rich tone and elegant phrasing” and has appeared as soloist with many noted orchestras. Violist Paul Neubauer has been described as a “master musician” (New York Times) and recently made his Chicago Symphony debut with Riccardo Muti and his Mariinsky Orchestra debut with Valery Gergiev. Pianist Gloria Chien has a diverse musical life as noted performer, concert presenter, and educator who was selected by the Boston Globe as one of its Superior Pianists “who appears to excel in everything.”

Ransom Wilson, flutist, has performed in concert with major orchestras the world over. He recently launched a series of solo recordings on the Nimbus label. Clarinetist David Shifrin has been a Yale University faculty member since 1987 and is artistic director of Yale’s Chamber Music Society series. He has performed with CMS since 1982 and served as its artistic director from 1992 to 2004. Bassoonist Marc Goldberg is a member of the New York Woodwind Quintet and St. Luke’s Chamber Ensemble as well as principal bassoonist of Lincoln Center’s Mostly Mozart Festival Orchestra and other notable companies.

Notes on the Program


Southland Sketches for Violin and Piano
Harry T. Burleigh (1866-1949)


Harry Burleigh, the first African-American composer acclaimed for his concert songs as well as his adaptations of spirituals, played a significant role in the development of the American art song. While attending the National Conservatory of Music in New York, Burleigh became a student of Antonín Dvořák, who encouraged him to preserve traditional African-American melodies in his compositions. Influence went both ways between Burleigh and Dvořák; Burleigh’s association with Dvořák resulted in the latter’s inclusion of spiritual melodies in his Symphony No. 9 (“From the New World”).

Burleigh, a distinguished baritone, was the first African-American soloist at Temple Emanu-El in New York and was also noted for his Palm Sunday performances of Gabriel Fauré’s “The Palms” and annual Vesper Services of Negro Spirituals at St. George’s Protestant Episcopal Church. The publication of numerous compositions, including Southland Sketches for Violin and Piano, Jubilee Songs of the USA, Deep River, and various works for solo voices solidified his reputation as a composer.

Southland Sketches for Violin and Piano, published in 1916, is exceptional in Burleigh’s opus in that it was composed for instruments rather than voice. These charming sketches are based on traditional African-American folk melodies and are infused with nostalgia. The four pieces demonstrate Burleigh’s mastery as a composer while retaining a noted simplicity. In the “Andante,” we hear syncopation. In the “Adagio,” the piano announces the theme, which is then taken over by the violin. These statements are followed by an echo effect between the instruments. A similar opening occurs in the “Allegretto grazioso.” The lively theme of the “Allegro,” stated in G minor, closes with a pizzicato chord of that key. After a fermata, a second section in B-flat major, marked Meno mosso, continues for a full fifty-three measures. The first theme, a tempo, ends the piece with a flourish.

Quintet in E-flat major, Op. 97
Antonín Dvořák (1841-1904)


Born in what is now the Czech Republic, Antonín Dvořák was the first Bohemian composer to achieve worldwide recognition and was noted for incorporating folk music into 19th century Romantic music. In 1892, he accepted the post of director of the National Conservatory of Music in New York City. During this time he met Harry Burleigh and was influenced by traditional African-American music.

While in America, Dvořák entertained the idea of composing an American anthem; although never completed, its theme was worked into his Symphony No. 9 in E Minor (“From the New World”) and this quintet, where the melody appears in the second half of the slow movement. The quintet was composed in the Bohemian enclave of Spillville, Iowa, in the summer of 1893 and reflects features associated with Dvořák’s “American” phase: use of pentatonic scale, diminished sevenths in minor modes, dotted rhythms, and syncopations.

The quintet opens with a spirited melody on the viola. Lively rhythmic fragments, syncopation, and some exotic harmonies form the response from the other players. Some music scholars attribute the rhythm of this movement to Dvořák’s exposure to the Iroquois tribesmen who visited Spillville in 1893, but this idea has not been authenticated.

The “Allegro vive” is still more exciting with vital rhythms, aspiring counter-melodies, and an explosion of enthusiasm akin to a Slavic folk air, or, perhaps, an American hoe-down. The lyric quality of this movement is expanded more fully in the “Larghetto,” a slow movement in which five variations on a reflective theme generate differing moods before settling on a warmly hymn-like version of the opening melody.

The “Finale” attains a breezy and carefree quality through the use of triplets and staccato eighth notes. This exuberant rondo based on three themes, each with its own individual character, creates the movement that gives vitality to the entire work. The coda is based on a broad version of the first theme and leads to a breath-taking conclusion.

Sonata for Clarinet and Piano
Leonard Bernstein (1918-1990)


Leonard Bernstein was born in Lawrence, Massachusetts, and educated at Boston Latin School and Harvard University. Bernstein established his reputation as a conductor when he became Music Director of the New York Philharmonic in 1958, a post he held until 1969; he later held the title of Laureate Conductor. Known as well for his compositions, Bernstein created works for symphony orchestras, chamber ensembles, and Broadway.

A leading advocate of American composers, Bernstein was especially inspired by the works of Aaron Copland. As a young pianist, he performed Copland’s “Piano Variations” and programmed and recorded nearly all of Copland’s orchestral works.

Bernstein’s Sonata for Clarinet and Piano was his first published work, written in 1941-1942. It is dedicated to David Oppenheim, a clarinetist Bernstein met while studying conducting with Serge Koussevitzky at Tanglewood during the summers of 1940 and 1941.

The first movement is a lyrical grazioso that opens with a line reminiscent of Paul Hindemith, composer-in-residence at Tanglewood in 1941, and hinting at the influence of Copland and the idyllic Tanglewood atmosphere. The second movement begins andantino and moves into a fast vivace e leggiere. Time signatures change throughout the piece and foreshadow Bernstein’s work in “West Side Story.” The more reflective mood of the first movement recurs, this time with a Latin-infused bridge.

The sonata has become a popular piece in the clarinet repertoire. The work has been played by solo clarinet with orchestral accompaniment, and Yo-Yo Ma has arranged it for cello and piano.

Appalachian Spring Suite for Ensemble
Aaron Copland (1900-1990)


Aaron Copland, born in Brooklyn, began his studies in music at the age of thirteen. At age 21, he went to Paris to study with Nadia Boulanger and returned to New York three years later. At this time he became a protégé of Serge Koussevitsky, who premiered many of Copland’s compositions with the Boston Symphony. As a composer, Copland is noted for a distinctive musical characterization of American themes in an expressive modern style. “I felt that it was worth the effort to see if I couldn’t say what I had to say in the simplest possible terms,” he explained. His three ballets based on American folk material—Billy the Kid (1938), Rodeo (1942), and Appalachian Spring (1944)—spread Copland’s fame throughout the world. For over four decades, as composer, teacher, author, and conductor, Copland expressed “the deepest reactions of the American consciousness to the American scene.”

Appalachian Spring was commissioned by Martha Graham and was first performed in New York in 1945. Copland never named the work, referring to it simply as “Ballet for Martha.” Graham herself gave the suite its title, a line from a poem by Hart Crane. Its original scoring, which we will hear this evening, was for a thirteen-piece chamber ensemble. Copland later scored it for orchestra, the form it is most frequently played and recorded.

The action of the ballet centers on a farmhouse newly built in the Pennsylvania hills in the early 1800s. The bride- and husband-to-be demonstrate the emotions, both joyful and apprehensive, their pioneering adventure elicits. An older neighbor speaks to them with the wisdom of experience, suggesting that not all moments in their lives will be happy. A revivalist preacher reminds the couple of the sometimes strange and terrible aspects of human fate. At the end, the couple is “left quiet and strong in their new house.” The eight movements are played without interruption.

Program Notes by Anne De Sutter