Welcome to the first Indiana University Concert Band concert of the year! Tonight’s program is called Reveries. The Oxford Dictionary lists two main definitions for Reverie:
- “A state of being pleasantly lost in one’s thoughts; a day dream”
- “An instrumental piece suggesting a dreamy or musing state”
This concert encapsulates both definitions. The program opens with Bjork’s haunting Overture from Dancer in the Dark, creating a dream-like landscape for the remainder of the concert. Katahj Copley’s Serenade for Wind Nonet begins similarly, but then goes through a series of scenes and moods, leading towards hope for the future.
The remaining pieces center around children: the sharing of history, the giving of gifts, and a nostalgic look at one’s own childhood. Karel Husa’s Divertimento for Brass and Percussion was written as the composer’s hope of sharing history and heritage with his own children. Gabriel Faure’s Dolly Suite, Op. 56 began as a collection of gifts to his partner’s daughter, and Robert Schumann’s Träumerei, from his Scenes from Childhood, was composed as an idealized reflection of childhood through the eyes of an adult.
Each piece on the program paints a different picture through sound, color, and texture and we encourage you to allow your mind to drift to wherever the music takes you.
-Dr. Tiffany J. Galus, conductor
Overture (from Dancer in the Dark) – Bjork Guðmundsdóttir
The Icelandic singer, songwriter and composer Björk Guðmundsdóttir (more popularly known as Björk) is an international recording star, celebrated for her eclectic popular musical style, profound lyrics, distinctive orchestrations, and unique voice. In 1999, the famed director Lars von Trier asked Björk to write the score for his film, Dancer in the Dark, the story of Selma, a Czech immigrant in America struggling to both hider her degenerative blindness and pay for an operation to prevent her son from also going blind. Von Trier convinced Björk to play the character herself, a performance which earned her a Best Actress Award at the Cannes Film Festival. While much of the score captures the machinery of the factory in which Selma works, the Overture is a slow brass fanfare, possibly reflecting her inner life, or visions.
Overture to Dancer in the Dark was last performed at Indiana University in 2014.
Serenade for Wind Nonet – Katahj Copley
“This is a piece originally seen as an anti-serenade. I wanted to write about the idea of a relationship going bad; however, I took that idea and decided to go a different route. Instead of things being a piece for the love of someone or the breakup of someone…this is the growth of a person from heartache. The first movement is written from the perspective of someone out of a relationship, hence the rather somber beginning; however, the movement shifts into a change of mood for the persoon – a more hopeful mood.
The second movement is a quirky encounter between two people – they are both shy and don’t know what the future holds for them. The third movement is a scene for a first date for the couple. The final movement begins with the clarinet and is rather slow. As the movement progresses, it gets faster and louder until the end. This movement represents the pacing of the couple where they finally admit their love for one another.”
– Program Note by Katahj Copley
This is the premiere performance of Serenade for Wind Nonet at Indiana University.
Divertimento for Brass and Percussion (1958) – Karel Husa
In 1955, Karel Husa completed a series of salon-style duets for piano titled Eight Czech Duets. Conceived as gifts for his children, Husa hoped the composition would help them experience their national heritage through music. The melodies in the work are a combination of traditional Czech folk pieces and original material inspired by songs Husa’s mother used to sing. While working at Cornell University, Husa arranged several movements of the aforementioned work for brass ensemble. The Divertimento for Brass and Percussion was premiered on February 17, 1960, by the Ithaca Brass Ensemble conducted by Robert Prins.
– Program Note by Luis Espinosa
Divertimento for Brass and Percussion was last performed at Indiana University in 2021.
Dolly Suite, Op. 56 – Gabriel Faure, arr. David C. Woodley
Of the original Dolly Suite, pianist Serene Yu wrote:
“Gabriel Faure dedicated the six pieces that make up the Dolly Suite to Emma Bardac’s daughter Helene (nicknamed ‘Dolly’).
Although he dedicated the entire work to Dolly, No. 1, Berceuse was an old work that Faure had composed in 1864, during his studies. Upon Dolly’s birth almost three decades later, FAure made several changes to create the current Berceuse for Dolly’s first birthday.
Similar to Berceuse, Faure referred to other music again with movement 3, Le Jardin de Dolly. The movement contains a phrase from his first violin sonata. In this movement, Faure sought to portray the garden of the Bardac family as seen in the ever-changing harmonies. This movement was given to Dolly as a gift for New Years Day 1895.
The final movement, Le Pas Espagnol, was inspired by a bronze equestrian statue that Dolly loved. Like other French composers at the time, Faure had a fascination with Spanish culture, as seen in the exhilarating grand finale.”
This setting was completed by former Professor of Music at Indiana University, David C. Woodley. Though most known for his time with the Marching Hundred and IU Athletic Bands, Professor Woodley was also a very active arranger and transcriber of concert music and a frequent conductor of the Indiana University Concert Band. This transcription was the last arrangement “Colonel” had shared with me before he passed away on May 21, 2022.
Program Note by Tiffany Galus and Serene Yu
Dolly Suite, Op. 56 was last performed at Indiana University in 2013.
Träumerei (Dreaming) from Scenes from Childhood, Op. 15 (1838) – Robert Schumann, trans. Tiffany J. Galus
Most well-known of Schumann’s character piano pieces, his thirteen-piece Kinderszenen (Scenes from Childhood), depicts a nostalgic and idealized look at childhood through the retrospective eyes of an adult, with Movement 7, Träumerei (Dreaming), being the most iconic movement of the set.
This setting, premiered this evening, is dedicated to Professor David C. Woodley, my first arranging, orchestration, and transcription teacher. A long-standing joke between us lied in his kind-hearted humor directed towards my appreciation for what he called: “Crunchy Music.” This sweet and gentle transcription is a complete departure from ‘crunchy,’ and serves as an epilogue or ‘encore,’ of our program.
In honor of the influence of Professor Woodley on his thousands upon thousands of students during his 27-year tenure at Indiana University and his legacy on the Jacobs School of Music, I ask that you close your eyes and reflect during our performance this evening.
Study Hard, Dismissed.
Professor David C. Woodley
August 18, 1960 – May 21, 2022