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Performance details

Thursday 24 November 2022 at 7.30pm
Melbourne Town Hall

Friday 25 November 2022 at 7.30pm
Costa Hall, Geelong

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Melbourne Symphony Orchestra
Gemma New conductor
Simon Tedeschi piano


Salina Fisher Rainphase
Gershwin Piano Concerto in F
Copland Symphony No.3

About this performance

Just announced as Artistic Advisor and Principal Conductor of the New Zealand Symphony Orchestra, Gemma New makes her MSO debut with a stunning collection of pieces including American greats celebrating jazz, blues and the American century.

Salina Fisher’s Rainphase – a composition inspired by the rain falling on the city of Wellington – opens the concert.

  • Rainphase is a piece that simply needs to be heard. It’s not bombastic, but there is such depth to the sound.
  • The work is sonically adventurous, beautifully evocative, and will have a profound effect on the audience.

You are then treated to one of Australia’s most renowned concert pianists, Simon Tedeschi, performing Gershwin’s Concerto in F.

  • A composer pivotal in defining the American musical style, Gershwin also grappled with approval in the academic and popular spheres.
  • Only a day after the raging success of Gershwin’s Rhapsody in Blue, he was approached to write a “real piano concerto”, or in other words, something closer to the traditional classical model. Rather than turn his back on the then current musical forms, Gershwin decided to incorporate them. The result was this work that ranges effortlessly over different musical structures, to create something truly wonderful and unique.
  • There are suggestions of the Charleston, ragtime, jazz and blues throughout the work, and flexibility in the way these elements emerge from one another – a masterful, consummate fusion.

Closing the concert is Copland’s Symphony No.3; a pillar of 20th century American composition.

  • Composed between 1944–1946, the symphony suggests the mammoth achievements of the United States at the close of WWII without a hint of triumphalism.
  • This work is loud, heroic, and features lots of brass.
  • Copland considered it important that his music was accessible to everyone, as witnessed by the success and popularity of his Fanfare for the Common Man. To help make this symphony accessible, he literally copy-pasted the entirety of Fanfare for the Common Man at the top of the finale.

Duration: approx. 110 minutes including interval

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