Heaven on Earth

Guest Conducting Concert Programme Details

A spiritual and deeply sensual celebration, Heaven on Earth (or "Himmel auf Erde", "Hemel op Aarde" ... ) features music which is simultaneously heavenly and deliciously earthy, including Schmitt's ground-breaking, musical ode to nature, "Symphonie Pastoral". The second half of the programme features Mendelssohn's classic Symphony no. 4 "Italian" portraying the pulsating vitality and sensuality of the, in itself heaven-on-earth, Italian countryside, its lifestyle and richly spiritual traditions. 

Joseph Schmitt (1734 - 1791) was a musical priest at Kloster Eberbach in the wine growing area of the Rheingau - still famous for its beautiful natural surroundings and magnificent Sekt (or sparkling wine). In the early 1770 he relocated to the bustling Dutch trading city of Amsterdam, where he helped establish the Netherlands' first purpose built concert hall, the Felix Meritis. A stunning orchestral tone poem by this "Dutch Haydn", Schmitt's Pastoral Symphony celebrates the power and beauty of nature, highlighting the verdant, rejuvenating and life-giving qualities of the countryside. It is a vital and vibrant work, bursting with fresh musical ideas and compositional innovation, and pre-dates Beethoven's version by some 25 years. 

Uplifting, heavenly sounds also abound in the famous second movement of Mozart's Piano Concerto KV 467 or, alternately, in a selection of delectably Mozart soprano arias. 
From his 9th Symphony The Seasons, Spohr's "Summer" beautifully imbues the ease, warmth and completeness of a perfect summer's day. In his Symphony no. 83, Haydn contrasts the stormy un-ease, harshness and precariousness of modern, industrial city life with idyllic, refreshingly uncomplicated, country goodness and simplicity. 

Simon Murphy has performed works in the programme for Dutch radio at Amsterdam's historic Felix Meritis (with EBU worldwide, live broadcast) in 2006, at the Haydn Festival at Schloss Brühl and at the Holland Festival of Early Music Utrecht in 2007, in the major Dutch Halls 2004 - 2012, and in the NDA orchestra's own symphonic series in The Hague's Philipszaal in 2009 - 2012. 

Concert Programme 

Version 1 with Piano Soloist 

J. Haydn Symphony no. 83 in g/G "La Poule" ("The Hen")
W.A. Mozart Piano Concerto KV 467 "Elvira Madigan"
J. Schmitt "Symphony Pastoral" in c/C
L. Spohr Summer from Symphony no. 9 "The Seasons"
F. Mendelssohn-Bartholdy Symphony no. 4 in A, Op. 90 "Italian" 

Version 2 with Soprano Soloist

J. Haydn Symphony no. 83 in g/G "La Poule" ("The Hen")
J. Schmitt "Symphony Pastoral" in c/C
W.A. Mozart Selected Arias
H. Marschner Aria "Im mai" from Der Holzdieb 
L. Spohr Summer from Symphony no. 9 "The Seasons"
F. Mendelssohn-Bartholdy Symphony no. 4 in A, Op. 90 "Italian" 

An further, alternate version of the programme is available with a selection of Schmitt's religious works balancing his Symphonie Pastoral and the other symphonic works on the programme. 



Package Details 

Each of Simon Murphy's guest conducting packages features completely marked-up orchestral performance material (scores and parts), necessary planning information, a selection of audio/visual promotional material, complete vocal texts and programme notes. 

Further programme information and enquiries: info@simonmurphyconductor.com 




Programmes and Programme Concepts © Simon Murphy, 2013