WHEN: December 10, 2022, 3:00 pm
WHERE: Ritsche Auditorium (Stewart Hall), St. Cloud State University
Christmas Overture | Samuel Coleridge-Taylor
Selections from The Nutcracker: “March”, “Dance of the Mirlitons”, and “Waltz of the Flowers” | Pyotr Ilyich Tchaikovsky
Veni, Veni | Chip Davis
Bal masque | Amy Beach
Unter Donner und Blitz (Thunder and Lightning Polka) | Johann Strauss Jr.
Hanukkah Festival Overture | Lucas Richman
Carol of the Bells | Richard Heyman
How the Grinch Stole Christmas | Jerry Brubaker
Sleigh Ride | Leroy Anderson
Christmas Sing Along | Finnegan
Samuel Coleridge-Taylor: Christmas Overture
Though Samuel Coleridge-Taylor’s name may be less familiar to the average concertgoer, it was certainly not the case during his life. Born in London, Coleridge-Taylor was highly sought out, especially by choral societies throughout Britain. His trilogy of cantatas, The Song of Hiawatha, was as popular as Mendelssohn’s Elijah. Outside of the choral tradition, Coleridge-Taylor also wrote purely orchestral music. His Christmas Overture – a work of excellent craftsmanship – was posthumously arranged in 1925 for full orchestra. This lush overture welcomes the holiday season with joy and cheer.
Tchaikovsky: Selections from The Nutcracker
With roughly 130 years of repeated performance history, The Nutcracker (1892) might be hailed as one of the greatest works to have ever graced the stage. A masterwork in orchestral color, the lively “March”, the “Dance of the Mirlitons”, and a “Waltz of the Flowers” transports us back to a world of fantasy and imagination.
Chip Davis: Veni, Veni
This beautiful and solemn arrangement of the centuries-old chant, “Veni, veni Emmanuel” by Chip Davis, creates the opportunity for quiet reflection during this wintry program.
Amy Beach: Bal Masqué
Written by one of America’s most popular female composers, this work is a waltz of fun. Originally scored for piano solo, the music, which depicts a “masked ball”, eventually made its way to the orchestral realm. Episodic in nature, lovely melodies dance with elegance.
Johann Strauss Jr.: Thunder and Lightning Polka
Johann Strauss Jr. was one of Austria’s most prolific and popular composers. During his life, he composed hundreds of dances, from polkas, waltzes, quadrilles, and many others. In time, he became known as the Waltz King–a title he holds to this day. His Thunder and Lightning Polka is one of his most exhilarating dances. Spirited from the onset, thunderous percussion and a catchy tune fill the hall with electrifying excitement.
Lucas Richman: Hanukkah Festival Overture
Based on several traditional tunes celebrating Hanukkah, Richman’s work is a much beloved overture for orchestras. From “Hanukkah, O Hanukkah”, to “The Dreidel Song”, this upbeat work is a rousing way to celebrate the Jewish holiday.
Richard Hayman: Carol of the Bells
Sparkling harp and bells, scurrying strings, and majestic brass fill Hayman’s arrangement of this popular carol with rich color and a refreshing new take. Interlaced with strains of other Christmas carols, this short tour de force keeps you on the edge of your seat.
Jerry Brubaker: How the Grinch Stole Christmas
The grumpy Grinch is back this year to try and cancel Christmas. Brubaker’s arrangement features some of the cartoon’s most iconic songs. From the jazzy swing of ‘You’re a mean one, Mr. Grinch’, to the more delicate ‘He carves the roast beast’, this Christmas classic is a hit for the whole family.
Leroy Anderson: Sleigh Ride
Leroy Anderson probably never imagined his Sleigh Ride would become synonymous with the winter holidays. After all, it was written during a heatwave in July of 1946 while Anderson was in his summer home in Woodbury, Connecticut. From its iconic sleigh bells, temple-blocks and a slapstick, to the final horse-neighing in the end, Sleigh Ride continues its reign as one of the most spirited holiday classics.
Finnegan: Christmas Sing-Along
A St. Cloud Symphony Orchestra tradition, we invite you to join us in singing many of your favorite Christmas Carols. Finnegan’s Christmas Sing-Along is the perfect way to usher in the festive spirit!