“Mahler took Beethoven’s final work, a farewell quartet, and transformed a goodbye into a work looking to the future and all its possibilities. It seems an appropriate time for me and the TSO to perform Mahler’s Symphony No.3 as we all look ahead to the future.” These are the words Music Director and Conductor George Hanson used to explain his choice of music for his last appearance conducting the Tucson Symphony Orchestra. Hanson is considered a Mahler specialist in Europe for his understanding of the music and his abilities to bring out the best performances from the musicians. Mahler’s Symphony No. 3 is massive, requiring a doubling of some instruments, an adult chorus, soloist and a boys’ chorus. Because of these requirements, the symphony is not often performed. For the Tucson performance the symphony will be joined by the TSO Chorus under the direction of Bruce Chamberlain and the Tucson Arizona Boys’ Chorus directed by Dr. Julian Ackerley.
Gustav Mahler wrote this masterpiece during the summers of 1895 and 1896 with some alterations done in 1899. He stayed in a small cabin by the shores of Lake Attersee in the mountains outside of Salzburg, Austria. Think Sound of Music country where “The hills are alive with the sound of music.” The natural beauty of the area gave Mahler inspiration to compose the different movements. Beethoven had his Ode to Joy. Mahler composed an ode to nature. Mahler had the philosophy that, “The symphony must be like the world. It must embrace everything.” Certainly Symphony No.3 fulfills this purpose.
Sunday, March 15, 2015, the SaddleBrooke Symphony Guild will have a bus leaving DesertView Clubhouse at noon to transport participants to the Tucson Music Hall in time for the pre-concert chat with Conductor George Hanson. Following the concert, dinner is at Guiseppes Restaurant. Entrée choices are Meatball ricotta—meatballs with pasta, tomato sauce and cheeses or Chicken Giovanni—chicken breast in lemon white wine and baked with parmesan cheese or grilled pork—pork cutlets topped with spinach and baked with mozzarella cheese. All dinners include house salad, bread, nonalcoholic beverage and spumoni dessert. You can reserve your place for this event by calling Lynda Saunders at 825-3425 and confirmed by receipt of your check. The cost (bus, concert ticket, dinner tax and tip) is $82 per person or $36 if you have your own ticket. Please make reservations by February 26. Cost of Guild membership is $25 a household or $15 for a single person. Join at this time; your membership will carry over for the 2015/16 season.
This performance in particular should be inspiring and emotional for all who attend, and that includes everyone, the audience, musicians and Conductor George Hanson who wrote, “This is my favorite orchestral work and an appropriate one to conclude my years in Tucson—a community which has meant so much to me and to my family.” Better be there for an unforgettable experience!