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Symphony No. 2 in C minor

I. Virtus
II. Pacem
III. Gaudium

IV. Exaltatio

Difficulty: Advanced
Duration: approx. 41 minutes

Composed in 2023

Instrumentation

Flute 1

Flute 2/Piccolo

Oboe 1

Oboe 2/English Horn

Bb Clarinet 1-2

Bassoon 1-2

 

Horn in F 1-4

Bb Trumpet 1-3

Trombone 1-3

Tuba

Timpani

Violin I

Violin II

Viola

Violincello

Double Bass

Program Notes

Symphony No. 2 in C minor was written for and dedicated to the members of the BAFFA Symphony Orchestra.  My love for romantic classical music originally inspired it, but quickly became an homage to my feelings about becoming the Interim Music Director in September 2022, and later named the Music Director of the BAFFA Symphony Orchestra in January 2023.  When reflecting on my time thus far with the orchestra, the relationships created, the musical memories shared, and the many emotions that filled my inner being from these wonderful musicians, I arrived at the following four words: virtue, peace, joy, and elation.  Comprised of four movements, this symphony takes the listener through a remarkable journey filled with emotions.
    
Movement 1, Virtus or “virtue” in English, follows a sonata-allegro form containing an exposition, development, and recapitulation.  Throughout the exposition’s first theme, feelings of fear, anger, and trepidation are internalized before finding a glimmer of victory and happiness in the second theme.  In the development section, multiple fragments are used, creating a sense of uncertainty.  A cannon of the first theme is stated in the lower voices, creating more tension, before moving on to the recapitulation.  In the final section of the recapitulation, the second theme is now stated in the c minor, resulting in a very uncertain feeling.  
    
Movement 2, Pacem or “peace” is written in ternary form.  Meant to be relaxing and calming, the various chorales and themes are uplifting and hopeful.  This movement depicts the wholeness I feel after our rehearsals and performances as I drive home.  The orchestra regularly provides me with a sense of self-worth and satisfaction.  They continuously encourage me to become an even better version of myself.  Pacem is my “thank you note” to the orchestra from the inner depths of my soul.
 
Movement 3, Gaudium translates to “joy” in the English language.  This menuetto is fun and light-hearted at first but quickly becomes full of excitement as it lunges into the middle section.  Playful and full of life, this movement is positive and uplifting.  
   
The final movement, Exaltatio or “exaltation” in English is the feeling of elation.  For me, each time I have the opportunity to work with the BAFFA Symphony Orchestra, our synergy creates this incredible feeling. Written in rondo form, each recapitulation of the main themes becomes more developed until it reaches its final climax at the end.
   
Music is an energy that can bind us all together on a higher level than most other activities known to humankind.  To me, the purpose of music is to allow people to feel something.  I hope this symphony allows you, as either a listener, performer, or conductor, to feel my admiration, appreciation, and gratitude to the members of the BAFFA Symphony Orchestra.
    
Symphony No. 2 in C minor was premiered by the BAFFA Symphony Orchestra on March 9, 2024, with Mr. Hartman conducting.

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