CONTACT: WINSTON BARCLAY
300 Plaza Centre One
Iowa City IA 52242
(319) 384-0073; fax (319) 384-0024
Release: Sept. 14, 2001
Philadelphia Orchestra performs Brahms' Fourth Symphony
The Philadelphia Orchestra, conducted by Music Director
Wolfgang Sawallisch, will bring the legendary "Philadelphia Sound" to Eastern
Iowa, performing works by Brahms, Elgar and Smetana in a concert at 8 p.m.
Friday, Oct. 5, in Hancher Auditorium on the University of Iowa campus.
The program for the concert, which follows two years of
celebration marking the orchestra's 100th anniversary, will be: Johannes Brahms'
perennially popular Fourth Symphony, Sir Edward Elgar's "Enigma" Variations
and -- appropriately for Eastern Iowa -- Bohemian composer Bedrich Smetana's
"Vltava" (the Moldau), the most famous section of his six-part symphonic celebration
of Czech culture.
One of America's most venerable musical institutions,
the Philadelphia Orchestra is on the verge of a new era as it begins its second
century. In December 2001, the orchestra known for its ravishing string sound
will move into a new home, Verizon Hall in the $265 million Kimmel Center
for the Performing Arts.
As the new hall is in preparation, the orchestra will
present 12 concerts in nine states during three-week coast-to-coast tour,
including the concert in Hancher.
Founded in 1900, the Philadelphia Orchestra has distinguished
itself as one of the leading orchestras in the world through a century of
acclaimed performances, historic international tours, and best-selling recordings.
The orchestra has been guided since 1993 by Music Director Wolfgang Sawallisch,
who will become conductor laureate in the fall of 2003 when Christoph Eschenbach
becomes the Philadelphia Orchestra's seventh music director -- continuing
the tradition associated with Leopold Stokowski and Eugene Ormandy.
The Philadelphia Orchestra annually touches the lives
of more than a million music lovers worldwide through its live performances
(more than 300 concerts and other presentations each year), publications,
recordings, and broadcasts.
The orchestra's continuing acclaim throughout the world
is regularly acknowledged through frequent tours, both at home in North America
and overseas. Recent trips include appearances in Asia in 1999 and again in
May-June 2001, and in Europe in 2000.
Only six conductors have served as music director during
the ensemble's first century, giving Philadelphia a unity of performance and
musical guidance unprecedented among American symphony orchestras.
Two Germans, Fritz Scheel (1900-07) and Carl Pohlig (1907-12),
served as its first music directors, forming the ensemble and carrying it
through its first twelve seasons. British-born Leopold
Stokowski was appointed conductor in 1912 and quickly
began leading the orchestra toward a new level of performance and recognition.
Leading a series of major world and U.S. premieres, including
works by Berg, Mahler, Rachmaninoff, Schoenberg, Scriabin, Sibelius and Stravinsky,
Stokowski firmly established Philadelphia's prominence in American classical
music. In addition to making widely-acclaimed recordings with his ensemble,
he instituted many other Philadelphia Orchestra traditions, including concerts
created especially for children and symphonic tours throughout the country.
Hungarian-born Eugene Ormandy assumed the music directorship
in 1936. For the next 44 years, he first maintained and then expanded upon
the orchestra's unique reputation. Under Ormandy, the orchestra refined its
famed "Philadelphia Sound" and traveled widely, touring throughout North America,
Europe, Latin America, Japan, Korea and China.
Ormandy's most tangible legacy is a Philadelphia discography
of nearly 400 recordings (including three best-selling Gold Records), many
of which have been reissued on compact disc and are considered classics of
the LP era.
Ormandy turned over the orchestra's leadership in 1980
to Riccardo Muti. The Italian-born conductor built upon the orchestra's tradition
of versatility by introducing new and unfamiliar music from all periods. An
advocate of contemporary music, Muti commissioned works by a wide range of
composers and appointed the orchestra's first composer-in-residence. Muti
also revived the orchestra's operatic tradition, presenting concert performances
of operas by Verdi, Puccini, Wagner and others.
Sawallisch became music director of the Philadelphia Orchestra
in 1993, following a 21-year tenure as head of the Bavarian State Opera in
In addition to the many important premieres it has presented
during the past century, the Philadelphia Orchestra boasts an extraordinary
record of media firsts. It was the first symphonic orchestra to make electrical
recordings (in 1925), the first to perform its own commercially sponsored
radio broadcast (in 1929, on NBC), the first to perform on the soundtrack
of a feature film (Paramount's "The Big Broadcast" of 1937), the first to
appear on a national television broadcast (in 1948, on CBS), the first American
orchestra to record the complete Beethoven symphonies on compact disc (in
1988), and the first major orchestra to give a live cybercast of a concert
on the Internet (in 1997).
The orchestra made film history in 1939 when it recorded
the soundtrack for Walt Disney's 1940 "Fantasia," the landmark animated feature
film that did much to popularize symphonic music in the United States. In
1973, the orchestra made diplomatic history when it became the first American
orchestra to tour the People's Republic of China, performing in Beijing's
Great Hall of the People. In 1999 it became the first American orchestra to
Cambridge Place Apartments is the corporate sponsor of
the Philadelphia Orchestra concert, through the University of Iowa Foundation.
Tickets for the Oct. 5 concert are $50, $45 and $40. UI
students and senior citizens qualify for a 20-percent discount, with Zone
2 and 3 tickets available to UI students for $10. Tickets for audience members
17 and younger are half price.
Hancher Auditorium box office business hours are 10 a.m.-5:30
p.m. weekdays and 11 a.m.-3 p.m. Saturdays. From the local calling area, dial
(319) 335-1160. Long distance is toll-free,
1-800-HANCHER. Fax to (319) 353-2284. People with special needs for access,
seating and auxiliary services should dial (319) 335-1158, which is equipped
with TDD for people with hearing impairment who use that technology.
Tickets may be ordered on-line 24 hours a day, seven days
a week through Hancher's site on the World Wide Web: <http://www.uiowa.edu/hancher>.
Orders may be charged to VISA, MasterCard or American
Express. UI students may charge their purchases to their university bills,
and UI faculty and staff may select the option of payroll deduction.
Information and brochures may be requested by e-mail:
To learn more about orchestra, visit its official website
at < http://www.philorch.org/> on the World Wide Web. For UI arts information
and calendar updates, visit <www.uiowa.edu/artsiowa>. To receive UI
arts news by e-mail, contact <email@example.com>.