|INTERMEZZO Free Sunday Concerts|
June 1, 2008 @ 2:30 p.m.
HULS CLARK DUO
Max Huls, violin
ABOUT THE MUSICIANSViolinist Max Huls joined the Jacksonville Symphony Orchestra in 1993 and was introduced to the First Coast as soloist in Bartók’s Second Rhapsody, for violin and orchestra. Mr. Huls is a violin coach for the Jacksonville Symphony Youth Orchestra, and in addition to his core membership in the JSO he is Concertmaster of the Coastal Symphony of Georgia. He appeared variously as concertmaster, soloist and conductor with the Savannah Symphony, and was concertmaster of the Memphis Symphony and Opera Memphis. Max was on the faculty of the University of Memphis and Rhodes College, and while living in Tennessee was much sought after as a studio musician, working with the rock group The Replacements and soul legends Patti LaBelle and Al Green, among many others. He has participated in numerous music festivals, including the Aspen Music Festival, the Colorado Music Festival in Boulder, and the Eastern Music Festival. Among his numerous local concerts and recitals, Max has performed Paganini's demanding Twenty-four Caprices for Friday Musicale, and as a member of Duo Proto he plays violin and viola alongside his son, Victor Minke Huls. Mr. Huls frequently collaborates with award-winning pianist Christine Clark, and the Huls Clark Duo was featured in our June 2007 Intermezzo concert.
A native of Jacksonville, Florida, Christine Armington Clark began piano studies with James Crosland, and continued her professional training at Oberlin Conservatory. She received a Master's degree in piano performance from the University of Illinois, and studied with Leon Fleisher in the Peabody Conservatory Artist Diploma Program upon the recommendation of legendary concert pianist Lorin Hollander. Ms. Clark was national finalist in the Collegiate Artist Competition sponsored by the Music Teachers National Association, and attended the Aspen Music Festival on a piano performance and accompanying scholarship. She competed in the Maryland International Piano Competition, and won the Boca Raton Piano Competition. A versatile musician, Ms. Clark played keyboard with Trap Door, a local rock group, and toured Europe under the aegis of Proclaim! International. She taught piano at Westminster Choir College in Princeton, New Jersey, and her chamber music performances include an appearance at the Goethe Institute in San Francisco. Well known along the First Coast, Ms. Clark has appeared with the Jacksonville Starlight Symphonette and the Jacksonville Symphony Orchestra. She is a frequent performer at Andy Clarke's Wednesday Happenings at Riverside Presbyterian Church, as well as at the Friday Musicale, and in 1999 she gave an all-Liszt recital for the St. Cecilia Music Society. In addition to being an accomplished pianist, Christine A. Clark is an attorney with the Jacksonville law firm of Pajcic & Pajcic, P.A., and while working as a law clerk in Washington, D.C., she gave perhaps her most unusual recital, performing in the United States Supreme Court at the request of Justice Sandra Day O'Connor.
ABOUT THE COMPOSERS & MUSICAaron Copland (1900-1990) is often called the “Dean of American Music,” and his most characteristic style, which blossomed during the 1930s and 40s, typically combines folk-like tunes with irregular, often jazzy rhythms and spacious harmonies creating a distinctly American sound. Along with Gershwin, Barber and Bernstein, the 1949 Oscar®-winning composer (for The Heiress) remains among the most-frequently performed and recorded American composers—his Fanfare for the Common Man (1942) is recognized even by those who don’t know the composer’s name, and his ever-popular ballet Appalachian Spring (1944) won him the Pulitzer Prize. Composed between these two concert staples, his wartime Violin Sonata (1943), written in memory of a friend who died in the South Pacific, displays both the jauntiness and pensive melancholy of Copland’s best-known works but also demonstrates elements of his less populist, more intellectual style in its sophisticated harmonic language and unpredictable formal elements.
Edward Lein (b.1955) is the Music Librarian for the City of Jacksonville and holds Master's degrees in Music Theory and Library Science from Florida State University. As a tenor soloist (now retired) he has appeared in recitals, oratorios and dramatic works throughout his home state, and drawing on his performance experience the majority of his compositions have been vocal works. He endeavors to imbue his instrumental pieces with a similar singing lyricism and typically avoids the intentionally artificial techniques of the Modernism that dominated the "serious" music of his youth, instead favoring a more spontaneous approach. Recent performances of orchestral works, including Meditation for cello, oboe and orchestra (premiered by the Jacksonville Symphony Orchestra in June 2006) and In the Bleak Midwinter (premiered by the Jacksonville Symphony Players in December 2007), have demonstrated this aesthetic. The Sonatina for Violin and Piano was composed in 2007, and, as the title suggests, its direct, neoclassical style incorporates familiar formal patterns. The first movement adopts the precepts of sonata form, and the Nocturne presents a languid tune that alternates with a hymn-like chorale. The final Scherzo is an incisive transformation of the second movement theme, and its “trio” section further transforms the tune into a rather mundane parlor waltz which gains character as it progresses. Composed at the suggestion of Max Huls, this light-hearted Sonatina was written specifically with the Huls Clark Duo in mind, and more talented collaborators could not be hoped for by any composer.
Although her music has suffered unjust neglect, Rebecca Clarke (1886-1979) is cited as one of the most important British-born composers active between the World Wars, and she is the only female composer who enjoyed the patronage of Elizabeth Sprague Coolidge, the American heiress who funded the Coolidge Auditorium in the Library of Congress and also started the annual Berkshire Music Festival in Massachusetts. Clarke started out as a professional violist, and she is highly regarded for her chamber music featuring strings, especially her 1924 Viola Sonata. Composed the same year, her luminous impressionistic tone poem Midsummer Moon is dedicated to the Hungarian violinist Adila Fachiri (née d'Aranyi) who premiered the work in London, and who is also the dedicatee of both of Béla Bartók's sonatas for violin and piano. In her youth Clarke performed with the famous Fachiri in various concerts in England, and she composed much of her chamber music for their all-female ensemble. Less than half of Clarke's works were published during her lifetime, but her estate, with the encouragement of the Rebecca Clarke Society founded in 2000, is working to make more of her compositions available and better known.
At a time when it was fashionable to write programmatic music that illustrates specific scenes, poems or stories, the great German composer Johannes Brahms (1833-1897) was recognized by his admirers as “Beethoven’s true heir” (Grove Concise Dictionary of Music) by demonstrating that established abstract formal procedures could still be used to organize musical discourse without sacrificing the passion and deeply individualistic expression that defines music of the Romantic period. Contrasting with his lyrical first two violin sonatas, Brahms’s Sonata No. 3 (1886-88) has four movements rather than three and assumes an almost symphonic scale. The choice of D minor as the central key harkens back to the stormy world of Brahms’s youthful Piano Concerto no. 1, op. 15 (1859), especially in the tarantella-like final movement, and the demanding piano part often resembles a concerto—there is no question that both instruments are meant to share the spotlight. As was very often the case for his works with piano, Brahms played the piano part himself for the premiere, so it is evident that in addition to being one of our most enduring composers he was also a highly gifted performer.
--Notes by Ed Lein, Music Librarian
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Our Sunday concert series is ending ... Don't miss the final Intermezzo concert!
ABOUT THE INTERMEZZO SUNDAY CONCERT SERIESShowcasing the talents of prominent First Coast musicians, Intermezzo Free Sunday Concerts are open to the general public and reservations are not required. The monthly concerts, which began in March 2006 and will conclude in June 2008 with this concert, have been the best-attended series of adult programs in the history of Jacksonville Public Library -- you won't want to miss our final concert!
Intermezzo concerts begin at 2:30 p.m. and are presented in the Main Library's Hicks Auditorium, located on the Conference Level of the Library near the Main Street entrances. Post-concert receptions encourage audience members to meet and mingle with the artists.
CONCERT PARKINGLibrary customers who use the public garage at the corner of Duval Street and Main Street may take their garage tickets to our ground-floor Popular Services Desk to get validation for free Sunday and evening parking. Free on-street parking is also available on weekends and evenings.
MUSIC @ MAINThe music continues! Join us for our next mid-week concert!
- Synthesis: Music for Solo Violin by J.S. Bach and David Paul
Wednesday, June 25, 2008 @ 6:30 p.m.
Library: Main Library
Location: Hicks Auditorium
Contact: Ed Lein, Music Librarian
Contact Number: 630-2665
Presenter: Ed Lein, Music Librarian