The concert, set for Sunday, Feb. 11 at 4pm at the Mill Valley Community Center, will be preceded by a dress rehearsal concert on Wednesday, Feb. 7 at 7:30pm at the orchestra’s usual venue, the Mt. Tam United Methodist Church.
The concert program kicks off with Giuseppe Verdi’s La Traviata (“The Fallen Woman”), which is based on a novel by Alexandre Dumas, and like Dumas, Verdi wanted the opera to be set in modern times (1852). The opera house management in Venice, where it premiered, refused a contemporary setting, insisting on a staging from the 1700s. As one critic wrote in 1856, “Those who have quietly sat through the glaring improprieties of Don Giovanni will hardly blush or frown at anything in La Traviata.”
Gabriel Fauré’s Dolly Suite, (originally written for four-handed piano and later orchestrated by Henri Rabuad), follows and is a series of short pieces written to mark the birthdays and other events in the life of the daughter of the composer’s mistress. Dolly was the young daughter of the singer Emma Bardac, with whom Fauré had a long-running affair.
The program concludes with Wolfgang Amadeus Mozart’s iconic Symphony No. 40 in G minor. It is said that Beethoven was inspired by Mozart’s last movement when he wrote his own Symphony No.5. Alfred Einstein commented that the work was “an appeal to eternity.” No Mozart symphony—not even the brilliant Jupiter—has caused as much commotion over the years as this one in G minor, sometimes known as the “great” (to distinguish it from an earlier symphony in the same key.) It was one of a handful of Mozart’s works to capture the romantic imagination. As with the greatest art – and love – Mozart’s music means vastly different things to different people.
The 411: The Mill Valley Philharmonic hosts a Valentine Concert/Party featuring the works of Mozart, Fauré and Verdi as well as champagne, chocolate, a live auction and plenty of surprises on Sunday, Feb. 11 at 4pm at the Mill Valley Community Center, 180 Camino Alto. Advance tickets highly recommended. The concert will be preceded by a dress rehearsal concert on Wednesday, Feb. 7 at 7:30pm at the orchestra’s usual venue, the Mt. Tam United Methodist Church, 410 Sycamore Avenue. Free. MORE INFO & TIX.