Pascal Rophé / fot. N. Ikegami
Pascal Rophé / fot. N. Ikegami
Orchestral concerts
Sorcerer's Apprentice
02.12.2022
Fri.
7:00 PM
NFM, Main Hall
Programme:

P. Dukas Sorcerer's Apprentice 
E. Sikora Concerto of Oliwa for organ and orchestra 
***
H. Berlioz  Symphonie fantastique  op. 14

Performers:

Pascal Rophé – conductor
Mari Fukumoto – organ
NFM Wrocław Philharmonic

Venue:
NFM, Main Hall
plac Wolności 1, 50-071 Wrocław
Tickets:
from 20 to 65 zł

The concert of the NFM Wrocław Philharmonic conducted by Pascal Rophé will feature two masterpieces by French composers and an organ concerto by a contemporary Polish composer. The solo part in the concerto will be performed by the Japanese virtuoso Mari Fukumoto.

L’apprenti sorcier is not only the most famous work of Paul Dukas, but also one of the most popular works of French symphonic music in general. Portraying the protagonist’s adventures with sounds, Dukas was inspired by Johann Wolfgang Goethe’s ballad of the same title. The perfect, brilliant and colourful orchestration, catchy, memorable themes, clear form and playful nature of this music make it still willingly performed and recorded. The work became even more popular after Walt Disney used it in his 1940 film Fantasy. Then we will hear the Oliwa Concerto by Elżbieta Sikora, premiered at the Oliwa Cathedral in 2007. It is an expressive and dark piece, in which the virtuoso part of the organ is contrasted with orchestra, in which a brilliantly developed percussion part is foregrounded.

The last piece in the concert programme will be Hector Berlioz’s Symphonie fantastique. The French composer presented an imaginary love story based on his own obsession with the Irish actress Harriet Smithson. Hence the work’s subtitle – “Episode in an Artist’s Life”. Berlioz added an extensive commentary describing what happens in each of the movements. The first shows the peace that the artist felt before meeting his beloved. The mood changes dramatically when he meets the woman – a characteristic musical theme appears, referred to as idée fixe, and the mood of the music becomes full of passion and violence. In the deliciously orchestrated second movement, the artist sees his beloved at the ball, among the couples dancing a waltz. In the third, he wanders alone through the fields, listening to the calls of two shepherds, but intrusive thoughts about his beloved disturb his peace. His mood is reflected in his surroundings. A storm is brewing, and the calls of the first shepherd remain unanswered. The rejected artist has an opium-induced dream in which he murders his beloved and is led to the scaffold among the shouts of the crowd. The thought of the beloved is broken off only by the blade of the guillotine. The finale presents a sabbath of witches who came to the protagonist’s funeral. The instruments imitate their laughter and groans, the idée fixe turns into a lively dance melody, we hear the tolling of mourning bells, a parody of the medieval sequence of Dies irae, with the strings imitating the sound of dancing skeletons. The daring, virtuoso and innovative orchestration combined with the aura of moral scandal surrounding the work shocked Parisians in 1830 and ... brought Berlioz and his work great fame.

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