Join Us For Our 2022-2023 Season!
Jupiter Symphony Chamber Players
“This was music-making of a very high order”
Fred Kirshnit, The New York Sun
Why the name Jupiter: When Jens Nygaard named his orchestra Jupiter, he had the beautiful, gaseous planet in mind—unattainable but worth the effort, like reaching musical perfection. Many, indeed, were privileged and fortunate to hear his music making that was truly Out of This World. Our Players today seek to attain that stellar quality.
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Monday, December 5 ♦ 2 PM & 7:30 PM
Albert Cano Smit piano
William Hagen violin
Jacqueline Audas violin
Ramón Carrero-Martinez viola
Christine Lamprea cello
Gabriel Polinsky double bass
Vadim Lando clarinet
Karl Kramer horn
Gina Cuffari bassoon
Richard STRAUSS Till Eulenspiegel’s Merry Pranks Op. 28 • 1895
The horn and clarinet play two themes representing Till: the horn’s lilting theme reaches a peak, falls downward, and ends in three long, loud notes, each progressively lower; the clarinet’s crafty and wheedling theme suggests a trickster at his trickiest. It has been suggested that while Strauss’s serious operas and tone poems clearly derive from Wagner’s compositional idiom, a lighter work with Strauss’s comic touch, as in Till Eulenspiegel, could be thought of as Strauss adding insouciant frivolity to Wagnerian drama.
Strauss is perhaps the one composer whose music is most influenced by Wagner. In 1874, young Richard first heard the operas Lohengrin, Tannhäuser, and Siegfried. At first, his father banned him from studying Wagner’s music, so it was not until the age of 16 that he was able to obtain a score of Tristan und Isolde. After he finished school in 1882, Strauss held an assistant conducting position in Meiningen, where he met the composer Alexander Ritter, the husband of one of Wagner’s nieces. It was Ritter who reinforced that admiration for Wagner’s music, which Strauss had previously nurtured in secret so as not to upset his father. Ritter urged Strauss to abandon classical forms and to begin writing tone poems as Liszt had done. He also introduced Strauss to Wagner’s essays. Wagner’s influence on Strauss was huge, and made a profound impact on his musical development, especially in the areas of instrumentation and the use of a symphonic approach to express drama and emotion of the stage action in the pit.
August KLUGHARDT String Quintet in G minor Op. 62 • 1894
Some of Klughardt’s chamber music was in the repertoire of the Joachim Quartet, including the Opp. 41 and 61 string quartets, the Op. 62 String Quintet, and his String Sextet, Op. 58. The Joachim Quartet was a Berlin institution from 1869 to 1907, led by Joseph Joachim and his hand-picked colleagues from the Berlin Hochschule für Musik.
Born in 1847, August Klughardt was one of the great composers of the 19th century, alongside Brahms and Bruckner, who made significant contributions to music history. Beginning at age 10 he studied at Cöthen, Dessau, and Dresden; held theater positions in Posen, Neustrelitz, and Lubeck; and in 1869 became court music director at Weimar, where he became friends with Liszt. It was the beginning of his enthusiasm for the Neudeutsche Schule (“New German School”). At the same time, he was loyal to the classical practice, and was influenced by Schumann and Brahms as well—his work was a synthesis of these dissimilar tendencies. In 1873, at the premiere of Liszt’s Christus, he met Wagner, who influenced a great deal of his music. He dedicated his symphonic poem Lenore to Wagner; his Symphony in F minor was written under the impact of hearing the Ring at the first Bayreuth Festival in 1876; and in 1892 and 1893 he conducted Wagner’s Der Ring des Nibelungen. Among his distinctions were an appointment to the Berlin Academy of Arts in 1898 and an honorary doctorate conferred by the University of Erlangen. When asked to direct the “Singakademie” in Berlin, he rejected this offer. Klughardt died suddenly in Roßlau at the age of 54.
Franz LISZT Liebestraum No. 3 “Dream of Love” • 1850
Originally conceived as lieder, Liszt composed and published his nocturnes in Weimar. They are an example of his program music, depicting themes of love and the loss of love. Number 3 is based on a poem by Ferdinand Freiligrath—O Lieb, so lang du lieben kannst (“Love as long as love you can”).
The relationship between Liszt and Wagner is summarized by Georg Predota: “When Franz Liszt met Richard Wagner in Paris for the first time in the spring 1840, they had little admiration for each other. Wagner, two years younger than Liszt, was neither successful nor financially secure. In fact, Wagner was actively looking for financial support from Liszt, asking him to become the publisher of his works. Liszt settled in Weimar in 1848, and he eventually staged several great Wagner festivals attracting national attention. In [one] event, Wagner participated in the failed Dresden Uprising and had to flee with a price on his head. He made his way to Liszt who sheltered him, arranged a loan of money and a forged passport to get Wagner out of Germany. For the next ten years Liszt supported Wagner in Swiss exile with money, gifts, and personal visits. Although Wagner was fulsome in his praise of Liszt, the relationship ran into trouble because of Wagner’s constant demand for money. Even more damaging was the fact that Liszt’s daughter Cosima [the illegitimate daughter with his Parisian socialite mistress, the Comtesse Marie d’Agoult] left her husband Hans von Bülow to live with Wagner. Liszt personally traveled to Lucerne to confront Wagner with the result that they did not speak to each other for five years. And Liszt would never forgive his daughter for marrying Wagner in 1870, and for turning Protestant shortly thereafter.”
Engelbert HUMPERDINCK Piano Quintet in G Major EHWV 37 • 1875
The Quintet, with a tender, yearning Adagio bearing an inscription to the memory of his sister Ernestine, who died at age 17, was written 5 years before he met Wagner.
Humperdinck (1854–1921) was a close friend of Wagner and Strauss. He studied at the Conservatory in Cologne from the spring of 1872, upon the advice of Ferdinand Hiller, who taught him harmony and composition. Many of his early compositions were destroyed by fire in 1874. In 1876 he won the Mozart Prize of Frankfurt am Main—his passport to the Royal Music School in Munich, where he studied counterpoint and fugue with Josef Rheinberger and had private composition lessons from Franz Lachner. Humperdinck joined the Wagner club “Orden vom Gral” in 1878, and after he won the Mendelssohn Prize of Berlin in 1879, he traveled to Italy, where he met Wagner in Naples on 9 March 1880. A close association followed. In 1881–1882, he was indispensable to Wagner, assisting in the preparations of the first performance of Parsifal at Bayreuth, among other tasks. In 1882 (after winning the Meyerbeer Prize of Berlin), he was asked by Wagner to go to Venice to prepare and conduct the latter’s early symphony and to take up an appointment at the conservatory (neither, however, materialized). After Wagner’s death in 1883, Humperdinck continued his friendship with the family. Cosima, Wagner’s widow, asked him to be the music tutor to their son, Siegfried. Humperdinck also regularly served as assistant conductor at the Bayreuth Festival where he met Strauss, who would conduct the world premiere of Hansel and Gretel in Weimar on 23 December 1893.
Monday, December 19 ♦ 2 PM & 7:30 PM
Drew Petersen piano
Josef Spacek violin
Natalie Loughran viola
Timotheos Petrin cello
Kebra-Seyoun Charles double bass
Roni Gal-Ed oboe
Vadim Lando clarinet
Karl Kramer horn
Gina Cuffari bassoon
Florence PRICE Fantasie No. 1 in G minor • 1933
In 1893, a year after arriving in the United States, Dvorák urged American composers to look to their own folk music for inspiration, advising through the New York Herald, “The future music of this country must be founded upon what are called the Negro melodies. This must be the real foundation of any serious and original school of composition to be developed in the United States.” Price was then only 6, but had already given her first public piano recital the year before. Her compositions, influenced by Dvorák, reveal that she followed his advice. The music publisher Barbara Garvey Jackson has said that Price’s “methods are actually quite close to Dvorák’s in the way she approaches the use of ethnic materials (both of the Old and the New Worlds).”
Price (1887–1953) was the first Black woman to have her work performed by major American orchestras. She was born into a middle class family in Little Rock, Arkansas, and was first taught music by her mother when white instructors refused to do so. Since women of color in the South were denied advanced training, after she completed high school in 1903 at age 16, her mother enrolled her at the New England Conservatory, where she studied the organ, piano, pedagogy, and other music disciplines (her composition teacher was the director George Chadwick). Having earned 2 artist diplomas, Price began her career as an instructor at segregated schools in Arkansas, then as head of the music department at Clark University in Atlanta until 1912. Returning to Little Rock, she managed a private piano studio, composed pedagogical music for children, married, and raised 2 daughters. However, in 1927, a brutal lynching and financial difficulties hastened the family’s move to Chicago. This move resulted in a burst of creativity, competition wins, and widespread recognition for her work beginning in the 1930s. The Chicago Symphony Orchestra performed her Symphony in E minor in 1933, and collaborations with Marian Anderson and Leontyne Price followed.
Samuel COLERIDGE-TAYLOR Nonet in F minor Op. 2 • 1894
Composed for oboe, clarinet, horn, bassoon, violin, viola, cello, double bass, and piano, the Nonet’s first performance (and apparently the only one until recent times) was on a student concert at the Royal College of Music on 5 July 1894.
The “Black Mahler”—brilliant son of a Sierra Leonean Creole father and English mother—was named Samuel after the poet, and in 1890 at age 15 he entered the Royal College of Music as a violin student, then switched to studying composition with Charles Villiers Stanford. Much admired in his day, his greatest hit was the cantata Hiawatha’s Wedding Feast. Coleridge-Taylor was proud to be “an Englishman” even though he suffered intense racism. On several occasions he visited the United States, where he was warmly received; he met Booker T. Washington and President Theodore Roosevelt, who invited him to the White House. He was an ardent supporter of the Pan African Movement, and was intent on establishing “the dignity of the Black man.” In 1912, he contracted double pneumonia and died at the age of 37. He left two children, Hiawatha and Gwendolyn, both of whom had distinguished careers as conductors and composers.
Clara Anna KORN 2 Songs • 
Korn (1866–1940) was born in Berlin, emigrated with her family to the United States at age 3, and was raised in New Jersey. “Eventually she began a career as a concert pianist and had a measure of success. But she received a letter from Tchaikovsky, who had seen some manuscripts of her compositions when he was in New York, and he urged her to become a composer. At that point she turned her focus to composing. In 1891 she received a scholarship to the National Conservatory in New York, where Dvorak was among her instructors. After her studies she taught theory at the Conservatory…. She [also] founded the National Federation of Music Clubs, the Women’s Philharmonic Society, and the Manuscript Society of New York. She wrote for music journals. Clara was a strong believer that women should have more opportunities in music: ‘How can any woman produce a successful orchestral work under existing conditions? You write a song, and some accommodating singer will sing it for you and give you the chance to correct mistakes; the same with a solo piece or any other solo composition. But where is the orchestra that will ‘try’ a manuscript orchestral selection, especially if it is not at all certain that it is worth trying? (letter to the editor of Musical Courier, August 7, 1907) [Mary McVicker, Women Opera Composers].” Korn composed for voice, piano, the orchestra, and an opera.
Antonín DVORÁK Piano Quartet No. 1 in D Major Op. 23 • 1875
At age 34, Dvorák wrote this optimistic Quartet in just 18 days, after hearing the news that he had won the Austrian State Prize for poor, talented musicians. Apart from the much-needed award of 400 gulden, the Prize helped to build his career as the jury members included the music critic Eduard Hanslick, Johann Herbeck (director of the state opera), and Brahms, who was “visibly overcome” by the mastery and skill of the submitted works, which included the Quartet. Its premiere was held in Prague on 16 December 1875.
Jupiter 2022 - 2023 Season
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Jupiter in the News
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As promised, here are the videos of John Field’s Divertissement No. 1 and Sir Hamilton Harty’s Piano Quintet. Fortuitously, our Jupiter musicians had the good sense to record the rehearsal in an impromptu decision, literally minutes before pressing the record button. Pianist Mackenzie Melemed (replacing Roman Rabinovich at the last minute) learned the music in 2 days! Bravo to him.
Both works are Irish rarities that were scheduled for the March 16 performances which had to be canceled because of the coronavirus epidemic. Even though the entire program could not be recorded because of technical issues, we are pleased to be able to share with you the 2 musical gems. Enjoy.
John FIELD Divertissement No. 1 H. 13
We thank the University of Illinois (Champaign) for a copy of the Divertissement music.
Mackenzie Melemed piano
Sir Hamilton HARTY Piano Quintet in F Major Op. 12
Andrew Clements of the Guardian proclaimed the beautiful Quintet “a real discovery: a big, bold statement full of striking melodic ideas and intriguing harmonic shifts, which adds Brahms and Dvořák into Harty’s stylistic mix, together with Tchaikovsky in some passages.” There’s folk music charm as well, reminiscent of Percy Grainger—notably in the Scherzo (Vivace) with its folksy quirks and nonchalance, and the winding, pentatonic melody in the Lento.
Our gratitude to the Queen’s University Library in Belfast, Northern Ireland, for a copy of the autograph manuscript of the music. Much thanks, too, to Connor Brown for speedily creating a printed score and parts from Harty’s manuscript.
Mackenzie Melemed piano
I Allegro 0:00
Jupiter featured on Our Net News
American program opener on March 18, with grateful thanks to Michael Shaffer of OurNetNews.com for recording the matinee concert, and making available the Horatio Parker Suite video for our viewing pleasure.
Horatio Parker Suite in A Major, Op. 35, composed in 1893
Stephen Beus piano
More video from this performance can be viewed on our media page
Jupiter on YouTube
NEW YORK CANVAS : The Art of Michael McNamara is a video portrait of the artist who has painted iconic images of New York City for more than a decade, capturing the changing urban landscape of his adopted city. Our Jupiter Symphony Chamber Players provide the music from Brahms’s Piano Quartet in G Minor, underscoring the inspiration the artist has drawn from Jens Nygaard and the musicians. Michael was also our Jupiter volunteer from 2002 to 2010.
Here is a video of the Jupiter Symphony Chamber Players performance of the Rondo alla Zingarese movement:
The producer-director, Martin Spinelli, also made the EMMY Award-winning “Life On Jupiter: The Story of Jens Nygaard, Musician.”
For more information, visit our media
New York Sun Review
“Some great musicians get a statue when they pass away. Some get their name imprinted on the roof of a well-known concert hall. But the late conductor Jens Nygaard has a living tribute: an entire ensemble of musicians and a concert series to go along with it...
It is one of the city’s cultural jewels...
In the end, if Mr. Nygaard was known for anything, it was unmitigated verve. That’s what the audience regularly returned for, and that’s what they got Monday afternoon. To have a grassroots community of musicians continue to celebrate Mr. Nygaard with indomitable performances like these week after week, even without the power of world-famous guest soloists, is proper tribute. And with more large orchestras and ensembles needing more corporate sponsorship year after year, I, for one, hope the Jupiter’s individual subscriber-base remains strong.
New York’s musical life needs the spirit of Jens Nygaard, and Mei Ying should be proud she’s keeping it alive.”
Read the complete article on our reviews page.
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