Germany to England to Poland to the USA

Sunday, May 20, 2018 at 4pm
Southwest High School Auditorium
3414 West 47th Street, Minneapolis, MN

William Schrickel, conductor
Heather Phillips, viola

Johannes Brahms – Academic Festival Overture, op. 80
Ralph Vaughan Williams – Suite for Viola and Small Orchestra (Selections)
Stanislaw Skrowaczewski – Music at Night
Howard Hanson – Symphony #2, op. 30 (“Romantic”)

For their season finale, William Schrickel and the MSO perform a program incorporating music by four composers from different countries. Johannes Brahms, born in Hamburg, Germany, composed his Academic Festival Overture in 1880 as a musical “thank you” to the University of Breslau, which had conferred an honorary degree upon him. MSO principal violist Heather Phillips assumes the soloist’s spotlight to play selections from English composer Ralph Vaughan Williams’ Suite for Viola and Orchestra. Poland’s Stanislaw Skrowaczewski, the brilliant composer and conductor who moved to the Twin Cities to lead the Minneapolis Symphony in 1960 and passed away in February of 2017 at the age of 93, wrote Music At Night in 1948. The MSO brings down the curtain on the 2017-2018 season with music by American Howard Hanson, one of MSO Composer Laureate Dominick Argento’s composition instructors. Hanson created his Symphony #2 (“Romantic”) in 1930 on a commission from Serge Koussevitsky that celebrated the 50th anniversary of the Boston Symphony. At turns bracingly powerful and sublimely lyrical, it is no surprise that it found its way (without the composer’s permission) into the closing moments of the film soundtrack of 1979’s Alien.