The concert, “Unfinished Masterpieces: Schubert’s ‘Unfinished Symphony’ and Mozart’s ‘Requiem,’” includes high school chamber groups from the following Maine towns: Freeport, Newcastle, Westbrook, Gorham and South Portland.

The concert will take place at 8 p.m., Saturday, Nov. 16. Tickets aer $15/$10 suggested donation at the door; open seating.

The Southern Maine Symphony Orchestra, conducted by Robert Lehmann, USM director of string studies and orchestral activities, will open the concert with Franz Peter Schubert’s “Unfinished Symphony.” The orchestra is comprised of USM School of Music students as well as community members.

Schubert began composing “Unfinished Symphony” in 1822 and completed only two movements. The composer died in 1828 at the age of 31, and the piece wasn’t performed until 1865.

“Schubert’s ‘Unfinished Symphony’ was discovered in a pile of his manuscript papers several years after his death,” Lehmann said. “It’s his eighth symphony and one of his greatest pieces, and nobody quite knows why he didn’t finish it.

“While there is a school of thought that the piece is complete in and of itself, and that the two movements are meant to complement each other, Schubert did make sketches for the third movement but never got around to following through” Lehmann said.

The University Chorale, comprised of USM students, will be joined by the Southern Maine Symphony Orchestra and the high school chamber groups to perform Wolfgang Amadeus Mozart’s “Requiem,” conducted by Robert Russell, USM professor of music and choral studies.

The high school chamber groups include: Freeport High School Chamber Choir, directed by Jessica Kenlan; Lincoln Academy Lincolnairs, directed by Beth Preston; Westbrook High School Chamber Singers, directed by Michelle Snow; Gorham High School Chamber Singers, directed by Matt Murray; and South Portland Chamber Singers, directed by Beverly Hosic.

In total, there will be more than 175 singers on the stage, along with the Southern Maine Symphony Orchestra, to project the intensity and depth of “Requiem.”

In July 1791, a mysterious visitor appeared at Mozart’s door and commissioned him to write a requiem for his recently deceased bride, offering half-payment in advance and half-payment upon completion.

Shortly after Mozart began working on the piece his health began to fail. Without knowing the name of the man who commissioned the piece, Mozart became convinced that he was in fact writing a requiem for his own death. Mozart died in December 1791 before completing the piece, which had been commissioned anonymously by Count Franz von Walsegg.

For more information, call 207-780-5555 or visit http://usm.maine.edu/music.


Only subscribers are eligible to post comments. Please subscribe or to participate in the conversation. Here’s why.

Use the form below to reset your password. When you've submitted your account email, we will send an email with a reset code.

filed under: