Tuesday 02 July

Summer Lunchtime

RTÉ National Symphony Orchestra

Time 1:05pm
National Concert Hall Dublin

Tickets: €12

  • Gavin Maloney
  • Liz Nolan, RTÉ lyric fm
  • Bernstein

    Overture to Candide

  • Gould

    American Salute

  • Rodgers

    Slaughter on Tenth Avenue

  • Copland

    El Salón México

  • David Arnold

    End Credits from Independence Day Suite

A concert of 20th-century American music as broad, bold, epic and colourful as the New World itself.

A master of concert hall, theatre and cinema screen, Leonard Bernstein’s re-working of Voltaire’s satiric novella Candide was first staged on Broadway in 1956. Its effervescent Overture carries itself with all the vim and verve of Bernstein at his most brilliantly theatrical, witty and colourful.

Composed as a war-time morale-booster in 1942, Morton Gould’s American Salute spins orchestral gold from the popular American Civil War song When Johnny Comes Marching Home. Part musical fantasy on the song’s principal theme, part theme and variations, it’s also a brilliant showpiece that makes much of individual orchestral sections in a whirling kaleidoscope of colour.

A ballet sequence taken from the 1936 Broadway musical On Your Toes (and later featured in the 1948 film Words and Music), Richard Rodgers’ Slaughter on Tenth Avenue is a grisly, gangster-filled tale of a love triangle that ends in murder. It prompted a score of verve and vim that carries itself with all the macho swagger, melting romance and thrilling drama of an opera in miniature.

Paying tribute to America’s near neighbour, Aaron Copland’s El Salón México marries three traditional Mexican folk tunes to the luxurious brawn and heft of a symphony orchestra to vividly depict the titular dance hall and its clientele intent on partying.

From America’s ‘dream factory’ Hollywood comes David Arnold’s rousing End Credits from the 1996 blockbuster Independence Day. It perfectly conjures the high drama, unexpected romance and humour of an epic tale of humanity’s desperate, last-ditch attempt to repel an invasion by alien creatures intent on conquering the Earth.