Head to the Symphony for three epics of Symphonic music, each noted for their role in the music of their time. Glinka’s Ruslan and Ludmilla, is considered to herald the era of prolific Russian music. Glinka was considered to be the father of the famous Russian six, setting a new direction of Russian music based upon folk lore and songs. Today, this overture is known for being an excellent concert opener.
The Elgar Cello Concerto, was a “slow starter” for Elgar-not only in its conception, but also in its acclaim and acceptance as a solo work. Written in the early 1900s, it never was recognized for its brilliance and difficulty until soloist Jacqueline du Pres brought it to great prominence. Today it is one of the cornerstones of the cello concerto literature. It is also considered one of his greatest masterpieces.
Aaron Copland is most noted for his ballets such as Appalachian Spring, Billy the Kid, and Rodeo, as well as music for movies. Yet this symphony, his best known, is based upon the unique sound of open intervals and the classic Fanfare for the Common Man. More than any other work, Symphony no. 3 uses themes, harmonies, and characteristic intervals that are unmistakably Copland. Each movement has a signature Copland theme, especially the final movement, based upon his Fanfare for the Common man. This concert, with its heroic overtone comes to full celebration in this final movement of the season.