Mozart and Schubert: an evening of masterpieces

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Linda Smith
Contributing Writer

Nestled comfortably in the downtown Dallas Arts District, the Meyerson Symphony Center beckoned a friend and me into its luxurious hall for an evening of two “magna opera” last Thursday by Mozart and Schubert.

The Dallas Symphony Orchestra performed under the leadership of 2012 Conductor of the Year Jaap van Zweden. Before the performance began, Mayor Mike Rawlings presented van Zweden with a certificate recognizing his contribution to the arts of the entire Dallas community. Van Zweden stated that he accepted the award on behalf of his entire orchestra, who made all the success possible. He added that the award would not go in his house or his office but instead be proudly displayed in the Meyerson Center so that all patrons would know of the fantastic work that the entire DSO has done.

Both my friend and I played the clarinet in high school and were especially excited for the Mozart Clarinet Concerto. With a full set of strings and other assorted brass instruments, soloist Gregory Raden beautifully executed about 45 minutes worth of music from memory. He was also standing the entire time, showing the dedication that is entailed in mastering such a demanding piece.

I had never heard much about Schubert, but I was extremely impressed with the varying instrumentation, which included a second set of violins, flutes, trombones, English and French horns, and timpani. The “Great” Symphony was slightly longer than the concerto, but added to the surreal musicality of the piece. Dynamics in the song also had a lasting effect, the full orchestra rising from a slight whisper barely above the sound of the silent crowd to a brightness that could almost be seen.

If nothing else, take a tour of the Meyerson someday. I have no doubts that van Zweden and the DSO would appreciate your coming to see the proof of their unique quality. I encourage all readers to attend a performance at the Meyerson, which is not only a beautiful facility in a well-kept downtown area, but also houses the spectacular Dallas Symphony Orchestra.

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