Stream of music


On Saturday night the Vltava River swept away Mandel Hall's audience as the University Symphony Orchestra performed 19th-century composer Bedřich Smetana's ode to his native Bohemia, Má Vlast. Not to be outdone, American pianist Edward Auer followed with Brahms's Piano Concerto No. 2.

The orchestra performed three of Smetana's six symphonic poems about his fatherland, then under Austro-Hungarian rule. A student of Franz Liszt, Smetana is best-known for his tribute to the Vltava (in German, the Moldau), which runs through Prague.

Auer brought to life Brahms's Piano Concerto No. 2 following intermission. Completed the year after the final installment of Smetana's Má Vlast in 1881, the work received immediate and wide acclaim from 19th-century audiences.

Upcoming music-department performances include the University Chamber Orchestra's presentation of Dvořák's Czech Suite at Fulton Recital Hall Saturday, February 9, 8 p.m. Mezzo-soprano Alice Coote and pianist Julius Drake perform Franz Schubert's song cycle, Winterreise, at Mandel Hall Friday, February 15, 7:30 p.m.

Ethan Frenchman, '08

Photos: Conductor Barbara Schubert leads the University of Chicago Symphony Orchestra.

February 11, 2008