2:00 p.m. — Sunday, February 19, 2023

Morrison High School Auditorium, Morrison, Illinois

The Clinton Symphony Orchestra will present “Stories in Music” as their family concert on Sunday, February 19 at 2 p.m. at the Morrison High School Auditorium. The popularity of the afternoon time trialed at last year’s family concert has brought it back this year, this time on Sunday. Imagine the giants of the past with Bryant’s Dinosaurs: A Primeval Symphony, and meet the instruments of the orchestra through Aesop’s Fables by Richard Maltz. We’ll enjoy Mozart’s Concerto for Flute presented by our 2023 Young Artist, Akshar Barot. The concert will conclude with Mozart’s Symphony No. 40 in G minor, K. 550. The music program honors the excellent opportunities for music education offered by area schools and music teachers. Many musicians of the symphony are teachers.

Students always attend free, Adult tickets are $20. A student may bring their favorite adult who will enjoy a 50% discount on their ticket, please ask about this offer at the ticket table.


Curtis Bryant –  Dinosaurs; A Primeval Symphony
I. Ultimate Tangle
II. Plated March
III. Pterrible Flight
IV. Duckbilled Ragtime
V. Tyrannical Tarantelle

W.A. Mozart – Concerto in G for Flute, K313
Allegro Maestoso
Akshar Barot, 2023 Young Artist

Richard Maltz – Aesop’s Fables

I. Prelude
II. The Hare and the Tortoise
III. The Fox and the Grapes
IV. The Ant and the Grasshopper
V. The Oak and the Reeds
VI. The Milkmaid and her Pail
VII. Finale

W. A. Mozart – Symphony No. 40 in G Minor, K550
Allegro Molto
Menuetto – Allegretto
Allegro Assai

Akshar Barot

Akshar Barot, the winner of the Clinton Symphony’s 2023 Young Artist Auditions, is a junior at Rock Falls High School, his music teachers are Patrick Anderson and Ramiro Martinez. He is a flute student of Julie McCord. In school, he is an active member of Scholastic Bowl, Speech Team, Knights Alumni Drumline, and of Sterling Municipal Band and Jazz Band. In addition to flute he plays Marimba, Xylophone, Electric Guitar, Bass Guitar, Indian Bamboo Flute, and Tabla. He plans to study aerospace engineering in the future, while continuing his passion for music. He will perform Mozart’s Concerto in G for Flute as part of the Symphony’s February concert, “Stories in Music” at 2:00pm on Sunday, February 19, in Morrison High School Auditorium.

Program Notes:

Dinosaurs: A Primeval Symphony

Curtis Bryant

An Atlanta native, Curtis Bryant earned his Master of Music
Theory from Georgia State University. His music has been heard
across multiple continents, as well as on radio and television
broadcasts. He has composed for virtually all concert media
including chamber, choral, opera, art song and orchestra, as well
as a variety of ethnic and folk styles. Although classically trained,
his diverse and unique style is influenced by blues and jazz and
exhibits a strong sense of melody.
Bryant has also composed music for numerous television
series and specials, including the award- winning Portrait of
America series produced by Georgia Public Television. He has
won seven Southern Regional Emmy Award nominations for
original music and numerous ASCAP Awards.
Inspired by his eight-year-old son’s love of dinosaurs, His
Primeval Symphony is an orchestral fantasy based on favorite
fossils of prehistoric North America in five movements from the
Jurassic to the late Cretaceous. Some of these legendary giants
are depicted in a series of dance-inspired musical episodes in the
manner of a classical suite.
I. Ultimate Tangle. A primeval forest with a herd of giant
ultrasound, their necks entwined as they feast on the surrounding
trees. It takes on the form of a fugue transformed into a habanero,
a tango of long necks.
II. Plated March. A dramatic stalemate between an
herbivore (stegosaurus) and a carnivore (allosaurus) of the
Jurassic period.
III. Pterrible Flight. The heightened depiction of a
dramatic encounter between the Pteranodon with a twenty- foot
wingspan and the sturdy three-horned triceratops.
IV. Duckbilled Ragtime. Depicts a clan of hadrosaurs
found throughout North America in the Cretaceous era.
V. Tyrannical Tarantelle. The favorite monster of the
Cretaceous, Tyrannosaurus Rex in a dark and ominous setting as
he waits in ambush and then lunges forward after his prey.

Flute Concerto in G Major, (Allegro)

W. A. Mozart

In 1777 Mozart was commissioned by a wealthy Dutch flutist,
Ferdinand De Jean, to write 3 concertos and several quartets.
Mozart, who has been rumored to dislike the flute, found it an
“unpleasant commission” and procrastinated, missed his
deadlines and was only partially paid. Despite complaining to his
father that “you know that I become quite powerless where I am
obliged to write for an instrument that I cannot bear,” the concerto
has become one of the most significant pieces in the flute
repertoire. The comments probably reveal more about the volatile
relationship between an overbearing father and his rebellious son,
as Mozart managed to write particularly effectively and sensitively
for the instrument, and one of his favorite musicians and close
friends was principal flutist in Mannheim.
Tonight our Young Artist performs the first movement, which
brilliantly integrates stately, lyrical and virtuosic elements. Written
in the “gallant style”, the bright, energetic Allegro in sonata form
exudes elegance and a delectable melody.

Aesop’s Fables
Richard Maltz

Raised in Massachusetts, prolific composer Richard Maltz has
earned degrees from North Texas and the University of South
Carolina where he is a Distinguished Professor Emeritus. His
music has been performed nationally and internationally and
includes symphonies, concertos, operas, ballets, chamber music,
percussion ensembles and children’s pieces. Some of his
commissions include the Charleston Symphony, the Pennsylvania
Sinfonia and the South Carolina Philharmonic.
He describes his musical style as primarily neoclassical,
favoring lyrical melody, tonal harmony and energetic rhythms cast
in traditional forms.
The descriptive and colorful character of Aesop’s Fables is
composed of light musical vignettes designed to introduce the
instruments of the orchestra and teach elements of music to
young students.

I. Prelude
II. The Hare and the Tortoise
III. The Fox and the Grapes
IV. The Ant and the Grasshopper
V. The Oak and the Reeds
VI. The Milkmaid and her Pail
VII. Finale

Wolfgang Amadeus Mozart

Likely the best-known of all composers, Mozart created music
in nearly every major genre, leaving behind compositions that
serve as archetypes of the Classical period. A true child prodigy,
he wrote his first piece of music at the age of five, published his
first composition by the age of seven, and had written his first
opera by his twelfth birthday. One of the most prolific and
influential composers of all time, he composed over 600 works in
his short lifetime and almost single-handed developed the piano
Born in Salzburg, Austria, Wolfgang was the youngest of
seven and one of only two siblings to survive to adulthood. His
father Leopold, one of Europe’s leading music teachers,
conductors and composers, gave up his own career to become
his son’s only teacher when Wolfgang’s musical genius was
discovered by his third birthday. An older sister, Maria Anna, was
also musically talented and their father traveled the two all over
Europe to show off their precocious ability, allowing them to meet
many musicians.
When the touring ended, Wolfgang was hired as a court
musician, performing and composing for Salzburg’s Prince.
Popular and beloved in Salzburg, he composed in many genres;
symphonies, sonatas, string quartets, serenades and operas.
Eventually growing discontented with his low salary and few
opportunities to work on his favorite form, the opera, he searched
for jobs, settling in Paris only to fail to find success. He grudgingly
returned to Salzburg where he continued to feel unappreciated
and was finally fired by the Prince.
Finally it was in Vienna where his career took off, and he
established himself as the finest pianist in the city while continuing
to compose, including a hugely successful opera, Abduction from
the Seraglio. His reputation established, he married, fathered 6
children and began studying the works of Bach, Handel and
Haydn, all of whom influenced his work. Mozart put on a very
popular concert series as a piano soloist, writing three of four
concertos each season. Finally attaining some wealth, the
Mozart’s lived lavishly, leading to financial problems later.
Shifting back to opera, he premiered The Marriage of Figaro
to acclaim followed by Don Giovanni. By 1787 he had obtained
steady work under the patronage of Emperor Joseph II who
appointed him court composer. Unfortunately, Austria was at war
a year later leading to a career decline. Moving to cheaper
lodgings, he still was forced to send notes to friends begging for
money. 1791 was his last year of great productivity, resulting in
The Magic Flute, his final piano concertos, a clarinet concerto, his
last great string quintets, the revision of his Symphony No. 40 and
his unfinished Requiem. His finances began to improve, but he
fell ill in September and died in December 1791.

Symphony No. 40 in G Minor

At no time was the gulf between Mozart’s personal life and his
transcendent music more apparent than in the summer of 1788,

when at the age of 33 he had only three years to live. His wife
was ill, his own health was beginning to fail, his six-month old
daughter died, he had small prospects of participating in any
important concerts, and he was in such debt he would not answer
a knock on the door for fear of creditors. Yet, amidst all these
difficulties he produced in less than two months the three
crowning jewels of his orchestral output, the Symphonies No. 39,
40 and 41.
The G Minor may reflect the composer’s distressed emotional
state at the time. It is through these great works that epitomize the
structural elegance of the waning classical era while looking
forward to the passionately charged music of 19th century
Romanticism. French Musicologist F. J. Fetid defines the G Minor
with “the accents of passion and energy that pervade and the
melancholy color that dominates it result in one of the most
beautiful manifestations of the human spirit.”
The tragic restlessness of the first movement begins with a
brooding murmur in the lower strings before the main theme is
introduced. Masterful contrasts of dynamics, rhythm and pacing
underscore Mozart’s mastery of orchestral color.
The gentle, relaxed second movement’s Andante moves away
from the turmoil of the first with imaginative contrasts of color with
rich chromatic harmonies and melodic half-steps
The third movement, conventionally a minuet, but this time in
name only as it moves back to a minor mode with irregular
phrasing and dense texture.
An energetic finale begins with a rapid ascending of over an
octave, then moving to a more lyrical pace. A final relentless
tempo blazes to a dramatic ending like a tragic opera.

Program notes compiled by Karin Anderson-Sweet

Learn more about our Young Artist Auditons.

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