CONTACT: PETER ALEXANDER
300 Plaza Centre One
Iowa City IA 52242
(319) 384-0072; fax (319) 384-0024
Release: Sept. 6, 2002
Interplanetary 'Voyage' Opens UI Symphony Signature Series Sept. 18
The University of Iowa Symphony will open its 2002-03 season of subscription
concerts with "Voyage," an interplanetary voyage in music accompanied
by images of outer space from NASA's Hubble Space Telescope, at 8 p.m. Wednesday,
Sept. 18, in the UI Hancher Auditorium.
The concert program, under the direction of William LaRue Jones, will feature
three works: "The Entry of the Gods Into Valhalla" from "Das
Rheingold" by Richard Wagner; "Krypton" by Cedar Rapids native
Michael Daugherty and "The Planets" by Gustav Holst
The concert will be the first of five in the symphony's new Signature Series
of subscription concerts. General admission for concerts in the Signature
Series will be by individual or series tickets, sold in advance through the
Hancher Auditorium box office. Additional concerts in the series will be Wednesdays
Oct. 16, Dec. 4, Feb. 26 and April 23, all at 8 p.m. in Hancher Auditorium.
The PowerPoint presentation of images downloaded from the Hubble Space Telescope
was created by Christine Stevens, an employee in the UI Department of Physics
and Astronomy. "I found some really cool stuff to go with the concert,"
Stevens said. "The Hubble Space Telescope has taken some incredible pictures,
and I think people will be really excited to see them."
A native of Cedar Rapids, Daugherty has created a niche in the music world
that is uniquely his own, composing concert music inspired by contemporary
American popular culture. The son of a dance-band drummer and brother to no
fewer than four professional musicians, he grew up playing the keyboard in
jazz, rock and funk bands. He came to international attention in 1995, when
his "Metropolis Symphony," a five-movement tribute to the Superman
comics that includes the "Krypton" movement to be played by the
UI Symphony, was performed at Carnegie Hall by conductor David Zinman and
the Baltimore Symphony Orchestra.
Currently on the composition faculty of the University of Michigan in Ann
Arbor, Daugherty has received numerous awards for his music, including the
Stoeger Prize from Lincoln Center, recognition from the American Academy and
Institute of Arts and Letters, and fellowships from the Guggenheim Foundation
and National Endowment for the Arts.
Daugherty has written, "I began composing my 'Metropolis Symphony' in
1988, inspired by the celebration in Cleveland of the fiftieth anniversary
of Superman's first appearance in the comics. When I completed the score in
1993, I dedicated it to the conductor David Zinman, who had encouraged me
to compose the work, and to the Baltimore Symphony Orchestra.
"The 'Metropolis Symphony' evokes an American mythology that I discovered
as an avid reader of comic books in the '50s and '60s. . . . Like Charles
Ives, whose music recalls small-town America early in our century, I draw
on my eclectic musical background to reflect on late-20th-century urban America.
Through complex orchestration, timbral exploration, and rhythmic polyphony,
I combine the idioms of jazz, rock, and funk with symphonic and avant-garde
"Krypton refers to the exploding planet from which the infant Superman
Holst was born in the English spa town of Cheltenham in 1874 and studied
music at the Royal College in London. He later became director of music at
St. Paul's Girls' School in the Hammersmith district of London. He wrote a
number of works for the theatre, their subjects reflecting his varied interests,
from Hindu mythology to Shakespeare and the medieval world. By far the best
known of all his compositions is "The Planets," a sequence of seven
movements, reflecting the composer's interest in astrology and the generally
attributed qualities of each.
Holst conceived "The Planets" by 1913, and the first movement,
"Mars, the Bringer of War," was completed in 1914, anticipating
rather than influenced by the outbreak of World War I. Other movements followed
over the next few years, and the full score was completed early in 1917. The
first public performance of the whole work was given in 1920.
Various aspects of the composer's musical personality are reflected in the
highly varied movements of "The Planets," including a rare glimpse
of the extrovert in "Jupiter," heavy-handed humor in "Uranus"
and the sad processional in "Saturn." "Venus" is relaxed
and lyrical, a mood that Holst did not often employ. The other three movements
could not be more different one from another, although they share a common
bitonal harmony that produces harsh dissonance in "Mars," a quicksilver
elusiveness in "Mercury" and remoteness and mystery in "Neptune."
A UI music alumnus, Jones joined the faculty of the School of Music in 1997
as director of the University Symphony and director of orchestral studies.
Prior to joining the UI faculty, Jones was the founding music director/administrator
of the internationally recognized Greater Twin Cities Youth Symphonies of
Minneapolis and St. Paul, Minn.
Jones is a highly honored musician, having received the Twin Cities Mayors'
Public Art Award, the American String Teachers Association Exceptional Leadership
and Merit Award and the David W. Preuss Leadership Award. He has also been
selected Musician of the Year by Sigma Alpha Iota , a music honorary society.
Jones has appeared as a guest conductor with the Minnesota Orchestra, the
St. Paul Chamber Orchestra, the Sinfonie Orchester AML-Luzern (Switzerland)
and other orchestras around the world. He has conducted all-state and festival
orchestras in 46 states and five Canadian provinces. He has been conductor-in-residence
at the North Carolina School of the Arts and the University of Miami (Fla.).
Jones holds a Master of Fine Arts in music from the UI and a doctorate from
the University of Wisconsin-Madison.
General seating ticket prices for the concerts in the Signature Series are
$7 for general admission ($5 for seniors and $3 for UI students and youth).
Season subscription tickets providing admission to five concerts for the price
of four will be $28, $20 and $12. Tickets will be available from the Hancher
Auditorium Box Office.
Hancher Auditorium box office business hours are 10 a.m. to 5:30 p.m. weekdays
and 11 a.m. to 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. This number will be answered by box office personnel
prepared to offer assistance with handicapped parking, wheelchair access and
seating, hearing augmentation and other services. The line 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 website:< 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: <email@example.com>.
A Division of Performing Arts brochure with an order form for University
Symphony Concerts and other events will soon be available. To receive a copy,
contact Judith Moessner at (319) 335-3213, or by e-mail at <firstname.lastname@example.org>.
The School of Music is part of the Division of Performing Arts in the UI
College of Liberal Arts and Sciences.
For information on UI arts events, visit http://www.uiowa.edu/artsiowa
on the World Wide Web. You may visit the UI School of Music web site at http://www.uiowa.edu/~music/.
To receive UI arts news by e-mail, contact <email@example.com>.