December 7, 2022 Breaking News, Latest News, and Videos

Historic Masterworks on Symphony Program

By Tabitha Hogue

 

The Santa Monica Symphony (SMS) is offering a free concert of great symphonic masterworks at 7 p.m. this Sunday, October 22 at Barnum Hall on the campus of Santa Monica High School. The performance will open with Russian composer Anatoly Lyadov’s intriguing tone poem, The Enchanted Lake.

SMS Music Director and Conductor Guido Lamell describes the work as, “a colorful and poetic piece that creates a deliciously tranquil mood.”

“It evokes images of a mythical landscape with a lake scene, but it’s given an enchanting character through the dreamlike orchestral sounds that were composed to describe it,” Lamell said. “It’s very beautiful and very evocative.”

The meditative, soothing character of the Lyadov piece stands in marked contrast to the repertoire for the rest of the concert, which will be powerful and dramatic. Next on the program, the SMS will be performing Sergei Prokofiev’s Romeo and Juliet Ballet Suite, which Lamell discovered at age 11 and describes as the first classical music piece that he went “absolutely crazy for.”

“I was staying at a home in Austria at that time and I was going through their record collection. I found a record that had a very dramatic picture of a scene from Romeo and Juliet, not knowing anything about it at the time,” he recalls. “So I put it on their record player and was captivated from the first moment by the power, the amazing colors, and the harmonies in this music. I played it again, and again, and again.”

Lamell describes this as a turning point in his musical tastes, as prior to this he had not been a particular fan of classical music, even though he was studying the violin at the time. He has been looking forward to conducting the Prokofiev piece for a long time and is excited for the opportunity to perform it with the orchestra.

Also notable is that the Romeo and Juliet Ballet Suite contains something rare in the symphonic repertoire, namely, a beautiful saxophone part. This will be performed Sunday by SMS saxophonist (and flutist) Sean Stackpoole.

Sunday’s concert program will close with Dmitri Shostakovich’s grand Fifth Symphony, which was written at a time when Shostakovich had fallen out of favor with Stalin and was on potentially precarious political footing. Lamell describes the piece as “incredibly powerful and brilliantly conceived.”

“With a superficial hearing, it seems to celebrate the Soviet Union with brilliant fanfares and tremendous percussion and thereby mollify Stalin,” he said. “But the inner message was one of rebellion and to the more sophisticated listener, the undertones of sarcasm and revolt are there.”

Lamell notes that the Fifth Symphony is quite technically difficult. But after four seasons of playing under his baton, he believes the orchestra is up for the challenge.

“I’ve been holding off on many things (prior to this) but the orchestra has grown in experience,” he noted. “Also many of our players have been together with me now for a long time and we’re able to do things now that we couldn’t do before.”

All Santa Monica Symphony concerts are free to the public and have open seating. Visit www.smsymphony.org or call or text 310.395.6330 for more information.

Music Director Guido Lamell conducting the Symphony.
Photo: Santa Monica Symphony.
Related Posts

Film Review – Black Panther: Wakanda Forever

December 2, 2022

December 2, 2022

FILM REVIEWBLACK PANTHER: WAKANDA FOREVERRated PG161 MinutesReleased November 11th Director Ryan Coogler is a Homer for our generation, recounting our...

“Art at the Airport” and 18th Street Arts Center Host Annual Winter Party

December 2, 2022

December 2, 2022

Free event set for December 10 By Keemia Zhang The local organization “Art at the Airport” has collaborated with the...

Film Review: “Fabelmans”

November 18, 2022

November 18, 2022

FILM REVIEWTHE FABELMANSRated PG-13151 MinutesReleased November 11th In 1999 Steven Spielberg was considering making a film about his childhood called...

Film Review: “The Banshees Of Inisherin”

November 13, 2022

November 13, 2022

FILM REVIEWTHE BANSHEES OF INISHERINRated R109 MinutesReleased October 21st A Banshee is a female spirit from Irish Folklore who marks...

Live Art Auction At Bergamot Station This Sunday

November 1, 2022

November 1, 2022

Santa Monica Auctions is hosting its bi-annual live art auction this Sunday November 6th starting at 1pm, see some of...

Santa Monica Auctions Announces Return of Longtime Annual Fall Auction

October 28, 2022

October 28, 2022

Robert Berman’s beloved event returns to Bergamot Station on November 6 By Susan Payne Santa Monica Auctions, an independently owned...

Film Review: “Amsterdam”

October 21, 2022

October 21, 2022

FILM REVIEWAMSTERDAMRated R134 MinutesReleased October 7th The opening screen of “Amsterdam” posts the message, “A lot of this really happened.”...

Film Review: “Blonde”

October 21, 2022

October 21, 2022

FILM REVIEW“Blonde”Rated NC-17166 MinutesReleased September 28th at Netflix Theatres and Online “Blonde” is not a biopic. It’s director Andrew Dominik’s...

Matthew López’s West Coast Premiere of the Astonishing “The Inheritance”

October 21, 2022

October 21, 2022

ACT 1: The West Coast premiere of the internationally acclaimed “The Inheritance,” Matthew López’s six hour and 25 minute sprawling...

Film Review: Don’t Worry Darling

October 7, 2022

October 7, 2022

DON’T WORRY DARLINGRated R122 MinutesReleased September 23rd Don’t Worry Darling is a fascinating Psyho-SciFi concept, and the full house audience...