INTRODUCTION TO WESTERN MUSIC
SAMPLE CONCERT REPORT
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On October 15 I attended a concert by the NDR Symphony Orchestra of Hamburg at the New Jersey Performing Arts Center. The performance consisted of only two pieces, yet both were met with enthusiastic applause and praise. The first piece performed was the Violin Concerto in D major, Op. 35, by Piotr Il’yich Tchaikovsky, with the famous violinist Midori as the featured soloist. The piece was divided into three movements, the first being Allegro moderato. The Concerto opened with the orchestra playing a crescendo until the appearance of the soloist, who presented the principle themes. From this point, the texture varied between the monophony of the solo violin and the homophony heard from the full orchestra. The melody introduced by the violin was then repeated in various instruments with large contrasts in dynamics and tempo, although the predominating tempo was allegro. When the solo violin returned, it was accompanied by the other violins playing a background of staccato notes. The high point of the first movement occurred when the solo violin produced an extremely high pitch in pianissimo and slowed down to a static pace, demonstrating her ability on the instrument. This movement ended with the entire orchestra playing fortissimo with a strong beat. The next movement of the Concerto began in the woodwinds with a legato melody punctuated by one note played by the horns. Overall, this movement remained somber with periods of excitement, indicated by the orchestra playing at an active pace. The violins contributed by adding descending scales of pizzicato notes. The melody then became a legato solo, which commenced in the oboe and was passed to the basses. The solo then returned to the violin, starting adagio and then increasing the pace for the entire orchestra. The finale occurred when two accelerating...
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