Baylor Symphony Concert Features Student Soloist March 1

Feb. 21, 1997

by Richard Veit

The Baylor Symphony Orchestra's next concert will feature the talents of violinist Noel Martin, a junior from Waco, who recently placed first in the 1997 Baylor Concerto competition. The concert, set for 8 p.m. Saturday, March 1, in Jones Concert Hall of the McCrary Music Building, is under the direction of Stephen Heyde, professor of orchestral studies and conductor-in-residence.

Opening the program will be "J.B. II" by Marvin L. Lamb, dean of the School of Music at Baylor. This piece, written in 1985, is the composer's vision of the poignant final scene from Archibald MacLeish's play, "J.B."

Graduate student Allen Hightower will conduct two works for the concert, "Variations on a Theme by Joseph Haydn" by Johannes Brahms and "Le boeuf sur le toit" by Darius Milhaud.

The "Variations" date from 1873 and are based on the "St. Anthony" theme that Brahms came across in a manuscript of one of Haydn's divertimentos for woodwinds. Brahms preserves much of Haydn's own scoring when he introduces the theme, and this opening statement is then followed by eight variations and an exciting conclusion.

The Milhaud piece was conceived in 1919 as music for a silent Charlie Chaplin film. It is in rondo form--presenting a recurring Brazilian theme interspersed with a variety of music hall tunes, some fast and joyful, others slow and sad. Its infectious rhythm and catchy melodies have made it one of the composer's most frequently performed works.

The program will conclude with Brahms's Violin Concerto in D Major, Op. 77. The composer's only violin concerto, it was premiered in Leipzig on New Year's Day of 1879. The soloist in the Baylor Symphony's performance, Noel Martin, has studied with Julia Hardie, Stephen Heyde, and Josef Gingold, among others, and is now a student of associate professor of violin Bruce Berg.

The concert is free and open to the public. For more information, call the Baylor School of Music at 755-3991.

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