Victoria Bond World Premiere


Victoria Bond
World Premiere for Orion and Ballet Chicago

Choreography: Daniel Duell, Director of Ballet Chicago
Commission sponsored by a generous gift from Mary Ann and John Gee.

Rezsö Kókai
for Clarinet and Piano (1951)

Franz Schubert
Trio in E-Flat Major
for Violin, Cello and Piano, Op. 110


February 27, 2011 7:30 PM
Music Institute of Chicago Nichols Hall
1490 Chicago Ave., Evanston IL
March 6, 2011 7:00 PM
Fox Valley Presbyterian Church
227 East Side Dr., Geneva IL
March 9, 2011 7:30 PM
Roosevelt University, Ganz Memorial Hall
430 S. Michigan Ave., Chicago IL


Simone Kerr and Rashaen Arts, Ballet Chicago Dancers

Program Notes

This program is funded in part through the Meet the Composer's Met-Life Connections Program.

Additional activities

February 14, 2011 8:00 PM
WFMT will broadcast a live studio performance with Orion and Kerry Frumkin's pre-recorded conversation with Ms. Bond, Dan Duell, Kathryne Pirtle and Florentina Ramniceanu.

February 20, 2011 2:00 PM
Open rehearsal featuring Ms. Bond along with the Ensemble and the dance troupe of Ballet Chicago in the Ballet Chicago space at 17 N. State, 19th floor.

February 24, 2011 6:00 PM
Victoria Bond master class at Roosevelt University in room 730. Ms. Bond will talk about her new work for Orion, her composition techniques, and her career as a composer and conductor. She will hear some of the student compositions created for an Orion Composition Competition in January. This will be publicized and open to students elsewhere as well as the general public.

February 27, 2011 7:00 PM
Ms. Bond will present a 1/2-hour pre-concert lecture in Evanston prior to the formal premiere of her work.

Instruments of Revelation was commissioned by The Orion Ensemble in collaboration with Ballet Chicago Artistic Director Daniel Duell, supported by a gift from Mary Ann and John Gee. This world premiere by Victoria Bond is in three movements, based on three cards in the Tarot deck: the Magician, or the Juggler in some decks, represents ambiguity, with music shifting suddenly from the mysterious and solemn to the cunning and dexterous; the High Priestess, possessing wisdom, passion and secrets of the law, inspires music of calmness that slowly ignites into throbbing desire, ending with a return of quiet murmuring; and the Fool, both the holy mystic and the intoxicated lunatic, is embodied in music with a touch of both comedy and chaos.

Ballet Chicago's Duell commented, "Victoria's music, being so image-driven, provides much visual and spiritual reference for movement. The unconventional performance spaces for dance in this series open up the opportunity to explore the instinctual responses of dancers and choreographer to Victoria's music in a setting different from the usual large proscenium stage. I am quite excited about it."

Victoria Bond has written works for the Houston, Shanghai and Richmond Symphony Orchestras, as well as the Saint Paul Chamber Orchestra, American Ballet Theater, Pennsylvania Ballet, Jacob's Pillow Dance Festival and the Audubon String Quartet, among others. The first woman to be awarded a doctorate in conducting from The Juilliard School, Bond was appointed by Andre Previn as Exxon/Arts Endowment Conductor with the Pittsburgh Symphony in 1978. In 1986, she was appointed music director and conductor of the Roanoke Symphony Orchestra, and shortly thereafter became artistic director of Opera Roanoke, holding both posts until 1995.

Kokai's Four Hungarian Dances was inspired by the folk tradition of the verbunkos, a type of Hungarian dance music used to recruit village youth into the army. In the music, the cavalry officer makes his slow and dignified introduction to the village locals; gypsy music appears in the background; and the recruiting process of slow and fast music, pulling the listener back and forth, concludes with a virtuosic flourish at the end of the fourth dance. Kokai's use of the clarinet for representing this verbunkos military ritual can be attributed to its newfound popularity in Eastern Europe during the first half of the 20th century and its important role in the folk music of rural Hungary for generations.

Schubert composed the Piano Trio No. 2 in E-flat Major, in a Classical four-movement form, for the wedding of a noted Schubertian, Josef von Spaun. The first movement is in sonata form featuring a contrasting tonal shift between E-flat major and a distant B minor tonality. The second, slow movement is based on a rondo usage of a Swedish folksong. The third movement is in a typical scherzo/trio/scherzo design, but uses a triple meter dance reminiscent of the Austrian folk dance known as the Landler. The final movement reprises the Swedish folk song from the second movement, characteristic of a Classical/Romantic style dichotomy Viennese composers (like Schubert and Beethoven) enjoyed.

Leadership support for Meet The Composer's MetLife Creative Connections program is generously provided by MetLife Foundation. Additional support is provided by The Amphion Foundation, Argosy Foundation Contemporary Music Fund, BMI Foundation, Inc., Mary Flagler Cary Charitable Trust, Aaron Copland Fund for Music, Inc., The William & Flora Hewlett Foundation, The James Irvine Foundation, Jerome Foundation, mediaThe foundation, National Endowment for the Arts, New York City Department of Cultural Affairs, New York State Council on the Arts, Pennsylvania Council on the Arts and Virgil Thomson Foundation, Ltd.