Echoes of the Panorama

An evening with the New Bedford Symphony Orchestra and the Grand Panorama of a Whaling Voyage ‘Round the World

October 7, 2018
Reception 7 pm  |  Performance 8 pm
At Kilburn Mill, 127 West Rodney French Blvd., New Bedford

An unforgettable experience of New Bedford arts and culture. Musicians from the New Bedford Symphony Orchestra and the Grand Panorama took guests around the world and back in time with music inspired by the sea and exotic ports of call. 

Tickets: $85 per person
Your ticket includes a private evening viewing of the Panorama, an hour-long performance, and fine hors d’oeuvres. Cash bar.

LEARN MORE about the Grand Panorama exhibition at Kilburn Mill.


Symphony Program

William Alwyn, String Quartet No. 10, “En Voyage”

#1  Departure. Adagio e dolente
#2  Sea Birds. Allegro vivace
#3  The Lonely Waters. Adagio ma non troppo
#4  Trade Winds. Vivace

The first movement, Departure (Adagio e dolente), opens with a gentle theme introduced by the viola and develops into a beautifully pastoral adagio. Soon there is a repeated violin motif around which the theme is developed, adding a gentle rocking motion. The music rises dynamically midway before finding the gentle peace of the opening, with some beautifully ripe string tone from the cello. The second movement, Sea Birds (Allegro vivace), springs into life with a pizzicato chord to move full of spirit, through passages that evoke fresh air and open spaces. Centrally, a wistful section appears with a lovely descending motif before further more reflective moments are heard only to race to a terrific coda. The Lonely Waters (Adagio ma non troppo) is the third movement and brings a gentle, hushed two-note rising and falling motif for violins and viola to which the cello adds a deep line. It is the cello that continues the melancholy theme over the rest of the Quartet.  Later the theme is taken by all the players, finding a quiet passion as it develops, the cello again adding deep rich tones, through a quieter, sombre passage that leads to the coda. The last movement, Trade Winds (Vivace), has a sparkling opening and a fast and breezy feeling to the movement overall. The music soon finds a greater flow as the melody is developed and finely shaped with every rise and fall. Later there is a rather romantic moment before the music scurries to the coda to conclude on a deep cello note.


Hector Villa-Lobos, String Quartet No. 6, “Brazilian”
Villa-Lobos composed his Sixth Quartet while in Rio de Janeiro, where it was first performed.  The work is a result of his move toward a more “popular” style, incorporating elements of Brazilian folk tunes and musical idioms. It is considered the most nationalistic of all Villa-Lobos’ string quartets. The second movement features a “choro,” modeled after a Brazilian improvised serenade. The textural features and melodic tonal language of the third movement resemble those of one of his most celebrated works, the Bachianas Brasileiras. The fourth movement’s soaring melodies and beautiful harmonies have led it to be called the Brazilian equivalent of Antonin Dvorak’s “American” String Quartet.


Amy Beach, Theme and Variations for Flute and String Quartet, Op. 80
Amy Beach was one of the first major composers of classical music in the United States. She composed over 300 works and both her Symphony in E minor (“Gaelic”) and her Piano Concerto were premiered by the Boston Symphony Orchestra. She often used Native American and other folk tunes in her compositions. Her “Theme and Variations for Flute and String Quartet” was commissioned by the San Francisco Chamber Music Society and features for its main theme her own song, “An Indian Lullaby.” The work is considered one of the real gems of the flute and string quartet literature, and a glowing example of the American Romantic style.


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