This November, the SSO marks the 100th anniversary of Armistice, the end of World War One, with a series of concerts that highlight music and stories of the era. The Great War had a significant impact on music – composers fought in the war, died in the war, lost loved ones, and saw the ravages of battle first hand. Their music changed. It shaped the sound of the 20th century. And it shaped our country.
The SSO wanted to explore the music of composers effected by the war. As well we explore music set to two great literary works from Canadian writers during the war – John McCrae’s In Flanders Fields and Stephen Leacock’s Merry Christmas.
Our SSO Chamber Ensemble will perform on November an afternoon of music in the historic Convocation Hall – entirely music composed during the war, its a fitting venue for the afternoon as the hallways are filled with tributes to the Saskatchewan soldiers who served in the Great War.
Our November 10th performance features Elgar’s heartbreaking Cello Concerto, a work he wrote after the war had ended. In it you see a torn world drenched in pain, sorrow, and eventual triumph. Also on the program is Ravel’s Tombeau De Couperin, each movement dedicated to a friend lost in the battle of war.
On November 23rd and 24th we’re presenting Merry Christmas Stephen Leacock by Neil Wiesensel. A co-production with Saskatoon Opera, this story tells the tale of Leacock himself being visited by spirits on Christmas Eve…