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On the second half of tonight's program we will hear first envoy for soprano and 10 instruments by easily blackboard. The work was commissioned by the University of Chicago in honor of its seventy fifth anniversary Mr. Blackwood himself will conduct and leave a pilgrim will be the soprano solist. Envoy is one of the fluid in my bota lair and was composed between September and December of 1966. The following is Mr Blackwood's translation. My heart fluttered joyously like a bird and soared freely among the riggings. The ship rolled under a cloudless sky like an angel drunken with a radiant Sun. What is that sad dark aisle. Cythera we are told. A land famous in the old songs the Eldorado of old Playboy. It's. Look. Now the land is poor. Pile of sweet secrets and festivals of the heart the superb phantom of ancient Venus soars above by seas like a
fragrance and fills the spirit with love when Langar. Beautiful aisle of green Myrtle. Filled with blooming flowers venerated forever by all nations. Where the size of adoring hearts roll like incense over a rose garden or the eternal cooing of a dove. Cytherea was now almost barren place a pebbly desert troubled by harsh cries. But I could just make out a singular object. It was not a temple hidden in dusky shadows where the young priestess amorous of flowers walked about. Her body burning with secret fire half opening her robe to the passing breezes. But. Upon grazing the coast so near that the birds were disturbed by our white sails. We saw it was. A German. With three arms silhouetted against the sky and black like a cypress in a thick trial. Of Venus on the aisle I found standing only a symbolic Giblet.
From which hung my own likeness. Our Lord. Give me the strength and the courage to contemplate my heart and my body without disgust easily Blackwood was born in Indianapolis in 1933. He began his studies in composition of America. Maybe I'm missing. Numbers of the contemporary Chamber Players have just returned to our stage here at Mandel hall to tune up Blackwood received a master of music degree from Yale where he studied with him to MIT and he also worked with J. Hall on a Fulbright fellowship. His first symphony won the Boston Symphony Orchestra merit award in one thousand fifty eight. His Second Symphony commissioned by G Schirmer for its 100th anniversary was first performed by the Cleveland Symphony in 1981 and his third symphony received its world premier in Mandell hall in the spring of 1965 at a concert
given by the Chicago Symphony Orchestra conducted by. Mr. Blackwood joined the faculty of the University of Chicago in 1958 and he is now an associate professor of music. As we mentioned Mr. Blackwood himself will conduct this work. Soprano soloist will be nieve the Pilgrim. And even Pilgrim received her master of music degree from Yale University. And is well known in both Europe and America for her brilliant performances of contemporary music. This is her third season as a soloist with the contemporary Chamber Players. You.
Know. Here is move a pilgrim soprano soloist. And easily Blackwood who will conduct his own work envoy to. The. Ooh ooh
little. Bird. Good.
A little. You have just one boy soprano and pen
instruments by using a black one. The work was commissioned by the University of Chicago in honor of the seventy fifth anniversary members of the contemporary Chamber Players of the University of Chicago were conducted by Mr. Blackwood and our soprano soloist was medieval Pilgrim. And this crowded Mandela hall is insisting that naval Pilgrim and the black would take
another bow. The final work on tonight's program is music for the magic theater by George Rushford. Commissioned by the from Music Foundation in honor of the seventy fifth anniversary of the University of Chicago. George Ross Byrd was born in Paterson New Jersey in 1918 after earning a Bachelor of Arts degree from Montclair State Teacher's College. He studied composition at the Mann School with Hans Spicer George Zell and Leopold Mandans. After World War Two he continued his studies at the Curtis Institute where he received a Bachelor of Music degree and at the University of Pennsylvania where he received a Master of Arts. He has received many awards including two honorary doctorates
and since 1961 he has been chairman of the music department at the University of Pennsylvania. Music for the magic theater as described by Mr. Ross Byrd quote is not a musical theatre piece. The impulse is to compose the work in the way I did and my decision to call it what I did stem from entirely different sources than the ones which as I understand them motivate today's musical theatre pieces. If anything the musical urge which produced the magic theater had its roots long ago and my obsession with the many layered density of human existence and the contradictory nature of all human experience. That plus my increasing disbelief in the value of all unitary systems or methods of composing contemporary music. The result. Impossible for me to define technically is a kind of sound collage in which the past and present are quite literally juxtaposed. To do this I have quoted Mozart Beethoven Mahler in various ways sometimes
pure other times not so pure but always with love and respect and I hope also understanding. The technical problem I posed for myself was how to move from one epoch to another how to modulator from one musical syntax to another without creating a pastiche of styles. Part of the solution was to put these different levels against each other successively and simultaneously. This in turn raise problems having to do with handling different times different speeds. I have worked close to the edge of disorder and chaos to create perceptual dissonance. In order that passages or sections not made up of contradictory elements may then emerge with utmost aural clarity or perceptual consonants. The title is drawn from here man has as novel Steppenwolf where the magic theater stands as the symbol of each man's inner life and in which if he is allowed to enter he may perhaps discover himself for the first time. The question always is what does he discover. His answer seems to me to be the whole world of human possibilities from which one must choose
oneself. Applying this to music specifically this music the answer for me is the whole world of musical possibilities. I try to use myself. AS. Goals. And now here is wrong. Thank you thank you thank members of the contemporary Chamber Players in Georgia-Russia Berg's music for the magic of theatre.
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Chicago Contemporary Chamber Players
Episode Number
Episode 4, part four
Producing Organization
University of Chicago
Contributing Organization
University of Maryland (College Park, Maryland)
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Episode Description
This program, the fourth of four parts, presents live performances of various contemporary classical compositions.
Series Description
This series presents concert performances from the Chicago Contemporary Chamber Players.
Media type
Performing Group: University of Chicago. Contemporary Chamber Players
Producing Organization: University of Chicago
AAPB Contributor Holdings
University of Maryland
Identifier: 67-12-4 (National Association of Educational Broadcasters)
Format: 1/4 inch audio tape
Duration: 00:13:51
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Chicago: “Chicago Contemporary Chamber Players; Episode 4, part four,” 1967-02-27, University of Maryland, American Archive of Public Broadcasting (GBH and the Library of Congress), Boston, MA and Washington, DC, accessed July 25, 2024,
MLA: “Chicago Contemporary Chamber Players; Episode 4, part four.” 1967-02-27. University of Maryland, American Archive of Public Broadcasting (GBH and the Library of Congress), Boston, MA and Washington, DC. Web. July 25, 2024. <>.
APA: Chicago Contemporary Chamber Players; Episode 4, part four. Boston, MA: University of Maryland, American Archive of Public Broadcasting (GBH and the Library of Congress), Boston, MA and Washington, DC. Retrieved from