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DEBUSSY: Rondes de Printemps
PROKOFIEV: Violin Concerto No. 2 in G minor, op. 63
BRAHMS: Symphony No. 2 in D major, op. 73
Originally from Orem, Utah, nineteen-year-old Aubree Oliverson made her solo debut with the Utah Symphony at age eleven, her Carnegie Hall debut in Weill Recital Hall at age twelve, and at thirteen performed the Tchaikovsky Violin Concerto to multiple standing ovations in a return engagement with the Utah Symphony. Having wowed the Aspen audience last summer as the Dorothy DeLay Memorial Fellowship Violin Competition Winner, she returns for Prokofiev’s Second Concerto.
The composer’s last commission before his return to Stalinist Russia, the work begins with dark lyricism, continues with a radiantly arching second movement, and ends in a spiky and muscular rondo with the soloist furiously dancing in 5/4 time. A tour de force!
Rondes de Printemps, meaning “round dances of spring”, is the final part in Debussy’s three-piece orchestral composition Images pour orchestre and is one of the composer’s more modern works. Embedded with two French folk tunes, the piece builds steadily to a resounding conclusion that joyfully hails the arrival of spring.
After struggling for years to complete his First Symphony, Brahms produced a second one almost effortlessly. “The melodies flow so freely that one must be careful not to trample on them,” he wrote from the idyllic lakeside village of Pöertschach where the work was composed. Much of the music is drenched in the blue skies, sunshine, and rippling streams that surrounded Brahms, with moments of tension and darkness adding a brooding, dramatic element.