A SPECTACULAR EVENT NOT TO BE MISSED!

Melbourne

31 August 2022

Hamer Hall, Arts Centre Melbourne
Box Office: 1300 182 183

Sydney

2 September 2022

Concert Hall, Sydney Opera House
Box Office: (02) 9250 7777

In truth, I became a conductor because deep down I wanted to conduct Richard Strauss’s tone poems

Zubin Mehta

Don’t miss the opportunity of a lifetime to see the Australian World Orchestra perform three of Richard Strauss’s most famous tone poems, conducted by one of the world’s greatest Strauss interpreters, Maestro Zubin Mehta.

Programme:

It has been said that what Shakespeare was to the sonnet, Richard Strauss was to the tone poem.  A tone poem (sometimes referred to as a ‘symphonic’ poem) is a piece of orchestral music, usually performed in a single, continuous movement, whose inspiration is sourced from a poem, short story, novel, or other (non-musical) source. 

Strauss’s tone poems are among the most striking works of the orchestral repertoire.  The descriptive power of these compositions is intended to both inspire and move listeners, taking the concept of realism in music to an unprecedented level. Strauss’s unique expression is why his tone poems are widely regarded as the pinnacle of this orchestral form.

Don Juan

Strauss composed Don Juan when he was only twenty-four.  It’s is based on “Don Juans Ende”, a play derived from an unfinished 1844 retelling by poet Nikolaus Lenau, where the legendary ladies’ man sets out on an idealistic search for “perfect love” and, ultimately despairing that he’ll never find her, allows himself to be killed in a duel.

Till Eulenspiegels Lustige Streiche

This tone poem depicts the misadventures and pranks of the medieval German peasant folk hero, Till Eulenspiegel. The music is cheeky and light hearted, referencing the prankster and his trickster behaviour. 

The action-packed score opens lyrically, the first theme starting in two-note violin phrases.  A woodwind tail links to the famous second theme, with a horn surging optimistically, before cascading downwards. Strauss’s masterful and sophisticated merging of both rondo and sonata forms delivers a work that is audacious in form, content, technique and colour, making it a definite audience favourite.

Ein Heldenleben

It is generally agreed that Strauss’s Ein Heldenleben, (“a hero’s life”), is a musical autobiography, filled with unflinching bravado, casting the composer as the hero.  The piece lasts about fifty minutes, and is performed in six movements, without breaks, except for a dramatic grand pause at the end of the first movement. 

This piece has endured because, like all great music, it pushes the orchestra to its limits in terms of volume and virtuosity. This complex work is bestowed with sumptuous tunes from previous tone poems.  Strauss’s expressive, compositional voice and virtuoso use of orchestration offer a wealth of vividness and drama, instrumental colour and mood.  It is therefore no wonder Ein Heldenleben has been described as a composition “over-populated with notes that make for an unprecedentedly lush listening experience.”

Don’t miss out!

Melbourne

31 August 2022

Hamer Hall, Arts Centre Melbourne
Box Office: 1300 182 183

Sydney

2 September 2022

Concert Hall, Sydney Opera House
Box Office: (02) 9250 7777