The BDO Day ends with a magical evening programme. For the concert, our orchestra’s principal guest conductor Guido Mancusi has selected works that are in some way connected to magic.
What better way to kick off a magical concert than with the opening of the soundtrack to the film The Wizard of Oz, which combines music from the most iconic scenes of the film, including the famous song ‘Over the Rainbow’.
The second piece of our concert is reminiscent of the real magic. Based on a ballad by Goethe, in Dukas‘s symphonic poem the sorcerer’s little apprentice, in the absence of his master, enchants the broom to do his chores for him as an obedient servant. So far so good, but the spell is so successful that the broom takes on a life of its own, unleashing itself and becoming independent. The apprentice tries in vain to stop it with magic and force, and is finally forced to chop it to pieces with an axe. But then – like in a horror film – the broom pieces come to life one by one and continue their wild rampage. The master returns home just in the nick of time, and with a simple magic spell, puts an end to the mayhem.
Saint-Saëns’ Danse Macabre is very much like a real black mass. We hear the clock strike midnight, Satan appears, tunes up his violin and then begins a devilish dance that becomes more and more bloodcurdling, more and more captivating, and seems to go on unstoppably until the cock crows. Finally, as the dawn breaks, the devilish dance subsides.
The adventures of Till Eulenspiegel, the mischievous prankster of the bourgeoisie, are brought to life in Strauss’s symphonic poem, which faithfully follows our hero’s journey through his adventures up until his capture, conviction and then the gallows. The music faithfully follows his final jerks on the gallows, but the subsequent playing of the Till motif poses the question: was the hanging really successful?