Today, almost three quarters of a century later, Barber’s Adagio for Strings is more than just a staple of the orchestral repertory; it is almost always turned to when American orchestras seek a musical work to provide beauty, solace and inspiration for their audiences. This was first noted in November 1963, after President John F. Kennedy’s assassination, when hundreds of ensembles throughout the U.S. spontaneously chose to play the Adagio in tribute; it was equally true in the days following 9/11. It is revered not only for its sensual appeal, but also for the way it seems to evoke a prayerful feeling of solemn contemplation—and, ultimately, of inspiration. It is Barber’s most popular and frequently performed work.
Pacific Symphony’s Music Director Carl St.Clair discusses our late February program. Tchaikovsky’s dazzling violin concerto is a test of skill for any violinist, but Vadim Gluzman, who performed Brahms last season in Orange County, is up to the task. In only eight minutes, Barber’s Adagio for Strings will take listeners from the depths of sadness to the heights of joy. And we’ll hear two exciting premieres from Michael Daugherty, including a musical fantasy on the radio broadcasts of Arturo Toscanini conducting the NBC Symphony in NBC Studio 8-H in New York City’s Rockefeller Center (1937-54).
CARL ST.CLAIR - conductor
Vadim Gluzman - violin
Paul Jacobs - organ
Daughery: The Gospel According to Sister Aimee (2012) for Organ, Brass and Percussion (World premiere)
Barber: Adagio for Strings
Daugherty: Radio City (2011) Symphonic Fantasy on Arturo Toscanini and the NBC Symphony Orchestra in America (American premiere)
Tchaikovsky: Violin Concerto
For tickets visit our pacificsymphony.org.