Philharmonic closes season with a blast of Beethoven, Chapman style
It’s a rare treat for young musicians. To close out its multi-year Beethoven celebration, the Philharmonic Society of Orange County is handing the stage over to the combined talents of the Chapman Orchestra, the Chapman Choir, the Orange County Youth Symphony, and choirs from UC Irvine for Beethoven: The Finale on Thursday, May 15, at the Renée and Henry Segerstrom Concert Hall.
But for at least one Chapman student, it’s familiar territory. Amid all the musicians, Connor Bogenreif ’15 will be something of a rare bird. Bogenreif is a current member of Chapman Orchestra and a former member of the Orange County Youth Symphony, which has often performed at the Segerstrom Concert Hall.
“It’s a really cool opportunity to me because it’s connecting where I came from with where I went,” Bogenreif says.
But it’s also an extraordinary concert program for all the groups. Under the direction of Daniel Alfred Wachs, director of orchestral activities, the groups will combine to perform Beethoven: The Finale, which will include the U.S. West Coast premiere of the new work by Mark-Anthony Turnage titledFrieze. The New York Times called Frieze “an audacious and vividly orchestrated piece from a major composer” after its U.S. premier in New York.
Beethoven’s mighty Ninth Symphony, the classic which includes Schiller’s Ode to Joy, culminates the fourth movement into a paean to the ideal of universal brotherhood. It’s not often performed by college or youth ensembles because of the massive orchestral and choral forces required. Frieze was composed by Turnage specifically to be performed alongside the Ninth Symphony. It bears little aural resemblance to the Ninth, but is based on Gustav Klimt’s painted Beethoven Frieze in the Secession Building in Vienna.
Frieze was commissioned by the Royal Philharmonic Society, BBC Radio 3 and the New York Philharmonic and was among the special concerts attended by the OCYSO during its London tour last summer.
Also on the program are Beethoven’s Piano Concerto No. 1, First Movement, and Symphony No. 9 in D minor, Op. 125.
Ticket information is available at the Philharmonic Society website.