The Westerville Symphony at Otterbein University is proud to announce the opening concert of its 35th season. The program includes Gustav Holst’s The Planets and John Williams’ Excerpts from Close Encounters of the Third Kind. We also celebrate Maestro Peter Stafford Wilson’s 25th year as music director. The concert takes place on October 22, 2017 at 5 pm at the Fritsche Theater in Cowan Hall at Otterbein University.
Gustav Holst wrote his seven movement large scale orchestral work between 1914 and 1916. It premiered in 1918 and continues to be a widely popular and enduring symphonic masterpiece. Each movement depicts one of the planets in the solar system, minus Earth and Pluto. Holst was inspired by the astronomical aspects of the planets writing to a friend in 1913: “…recently the character of each planet suggested lots to me, and I have been studying astrology fairly closely.” Three of the more recognized movement are Mars: The Bringer of War, Venus: The Bringer of Peace and Jupiter: The Bringer of Jollity.
The Planets calls for three instruments rarely heard on the orchestral stage: the bass flute, the bass oboe and the euphonium. Gustav Holst was a masterful orchestrator and uses these instruments in places where the effect cannot be replicated on another instrument.
The concert also includes Excerpts from Close Encounters of the Third Kind by John Williams. The score for this movie is unique in that there is a 5-note pattern that essentially becomes the character of Sam, the computer. It is hard to top John Williams as a movie composer and it is said that this score is one of his favorites.
About the Westerville Symphony at Otterbein University: The Westerville Symphony at Otterbein University provides exemplary symphonic performances to audiences in central Ohio, and music education in Westerville and surrounding communities. This season will see collaborations with the Otterbein University Choirs, Westerville Public Library and the Westerville Area Chamber of Commerce.