Holland Center April 16 & December 31, 2020

Telemann Concerto Polonois

This Omaha Symphony performance was recorded live at the Joslyn Art Museum's Witherspoon Hall on October 8, 2017.

This performance of Telemann's Concerto Polonois, a work for baroque chamber orchestra, was led not by a conductor but by Omaha Symphony Concertmaster Susanna Perry Gilmore. Enjoy this performance from your Omaha Symphony, released just for you as part of the new Symphony | Anywhere series!

Program Notes

In the 17th and 18th centuries, classical composition had reached the point where it wasn’t enough to excel at writing music in your own nationality’s style – you had to be ‘fluent’ in the stylings of Italy, Germany, and France regardless of where you came from. Georg Philipp Telemann came into/out of this scene already a ridiculously prolific composer, an influencer before there was Instagram, and was clearly a master of combining styles. He called it gemischter Geschmack – German for “Mixed Taste”. Thank you, German.

On top of French, Italian, and German influences, though, Telemann added the musical style of Poland, which shows up frequently in his compositions. The Concerto Polonois that you’re going to hear is the result of this appreciation for the Eastern European country. His interest in Poland and Polish folk music may have started during a six-month trip to Pless and Krakow, where he came to appreciate the “barbaric beauty” of the rhythmic, snappy folk tunes. Telemann translated Polish folk music idioms into the more traditional Baroque Concerto Grosso that we expect from the person who became Godfather to one of J.S. Bach’s children – and that’s where we find this Concerto Polonois: traditional ensemble and set-up, non-traditional inspiration. Gemischter Geschmack.

Listen Now!

Our concertmaster Susanna Perry Gilmore led the orchestra on stage and she provides some added details about the work and the performance.

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