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20th Annual Summer Metropolitan Flute Festival Orchestra

Paige Dashner Long, Director

with Kristjan Asgeirsson and Elizabeth Kuhn MacDonald, percussion

Sunday, July 14, 2024 at 5:00pm

The Concert Hall at Groton Hill

METROPOLITAN MOUNTAIN TOP CELEBRATION!

PROGRAM

Danse Nègre from African Suite, Op. 35
Samuel Coleridge-Taylor (1875-1912)
Arranged for flute orchestra by Paige Dashner Long

Mountain Prayer from Of Mountains, Lakes and Mischief
Phyllis Avidan Louke (b. 1954)

Usonia
Jonathan Cohen (b. 1954)

Allegro con fuoco from Symphony No. 9 in E Minor, Op. 95 “From the New World”
Antonin Dvorak (1841-1904) 
Arranged for flute orchestra by Paige Dashner Long

Dance of the Dryads from Symphony No. 3 in F Major, Op. 153 “In the Forest”
Joachim Raff (1822-1882)
Arranged for flute orchestra by Matt Johnston

Metropolitan Flute Fantasy
Paige Dashner Long (b. 1955)

World premiere celebrating 20 years of the Metropolitan Flute Festival

Prayer
Amanda Harberg (b. 1973)

ContraJam!
Paige Dashner Long (b. 1955)

Lueget vo Bärg und Tal (Look from the Mountains and Vales)
Ferdinand Huber (1793-1861)
Arranged for flute orchestra by Paige Dashner Long

Ride the Matterhorn
Leonard LeBow (1929-2007)

Today’s encore is:
Fluter’s Holiday
LeRoy Anderson (1908-1975)
Arranged for flute orchestra by Monty Adams

Featuring soloists Eve-Marie Nezich, Elise Locker, and Judi Lampert

Members of the Ensemble

Paige Dashner Long, Director

Piccolo
Susan Gagnon
Townes Osborn Miller

Concert Flute
Bonnie Anderson
Alexandra Andrews
Suzanne Baum
Kenneth Beauchamp
Martha Beesley
Sallie Brainard
Anne Carr
Jenny Cline
Karen Coleman
Stephanie Connors
Laura Everts
Susan Gagnon
Wendy Gill
Patricia Griffin
Christine Holley-Williams
Phyllis Howard
Jen Kramer
Jill Krawiecki
Bonnie Krims

Judi Lampert
Jennifer Lehman
Barbara Wall Lobosco
Elise Locker
Jennifer Long
Kimberly McKanna
Townes Osborn Miller
Marie Nagode
Eve-Marie Nezich
Roberta Nicoletta
Lisa Norton-Motulsky
Nicole O’Toole
Julie Pasquino
Michael Penzo
Lois Reynolds
Tammy Roggen
Kathryn Scarbrough
Gretchen Schlier
Louise Schneider
Mariellen Sears
Gabriel Shipe
Barbara Skaggs
Michele Smith
Martha Tangney
Annie Wang
Alison Weinstock
Linda Wiggins
Pamela Youngblood

Alto Flute
Elaine Allen
Susan Anderson
Deborah Rebeck Ash
Hannah Bitterman
Anne Carr
Amy Clark
Noreen Friedman
Lenore Gelb
Margaret Howard
Cheryl Lionarons
Jennifer Long
Brenda Meehan
Mary Norris
Elaine Olmstead
Francine Pancost
Peggy Preusch
Lois Reynolds
Ruth Robertson
Debra Schild
Louise Schneider
Lynne Sugar
Carol Sugimoto

Sub Contrabass
Flute in G

Kat Craven
Victor Villarreal

Double Contrabass
Flute in C

Paige Dashner Long

Bass Flute
Liz Crane-Wexler
Georgianna Crump
Beth Devlin
Kelly Gallivan
Jeanne Giblin
Doris Hall
Lorrie Hassan
Jeanne Hebert
Jennifer Leland
Jean MacAloney
Ellis O’Donnell
Serge Paul-Emile
Carol Peabody
Joseph Saenz
Martin Tentor
Martha Uhey

Contrabass Flute
Claudia Brill
Jonathan Cohen
Earl Grant-Lawrence
Laura Gustavsen
Jay V. Kast-Tuttle
Phyllis Avidan Louke
Alice Mullins
Maria Ramey
Shari Shaw
Eileen Yarrison

About Paige Dashner Long and The Metropolitan Flute Orchestra

Paige Dashner Long is an internationally recognized flute choir director, contrabass flutist, and award winning composer. An Altus Flutes Performing Artist, she currently directs the Metropolitan Flute Orchestra (in summer residence at Groton Hill Music Center), the Daytona State College Flute Choir, and the Florida Flute Orchestra. As an active guest flute clinician and ensemble director, she has led workshops and directed flute ensembles for music schools in France, Germany, and Mexico, as well as for universities and flute associations throughout America. Paige is Vice President of the International Low Flutes Society, performs with the International Flute Orchestra, serves on the Flute Clubs Committee of the National Flute Association (NFA), and is a former Chairperson of the Low Flutes Committee of the NFA, former Coordinator of the NFA’s Flute Choir Composition Competition, and past President of the Greater Boston Flute Association. Many of her original compositions and arrangements have won awards for newly published music. 

An active performer, Paige plays flute and harpsichord with the Daytona Solisti Chamber Orchestra and the Chamber Players of Palm Coast, which she also directs. An active teacher, she is on the music faculty at Daytona State College (Daytona Beach, FL). Paige is also an international ensemble performer and has presented concerts in Japan, France, Germany, Austria, Iceland, Italy, England, Scotland, Wales, Ireland, Malta, Greece, Belgium, Luxembourg, The Netherlands, Czech Republic, Russia, Norway, Sweden, Finland, Estonia, Latvia, Poland, Slovenia, Slovakia, Hungary, Croatia, Portugal, Chile, and Mexico. As a lower flute specialist, Paige has written several articles for Flute Talk Magazine as well as for flute association newsletters throughout the country. As a low flutes advocate, she has been interviewed and filmed by both local and national news organizations, including CNN’s Great Big Story. For more information please visit www.contraflute.com.

The Metropolitan Flute Orchestra, in summer residence at Groton Hill Music Center, is comprised of select conservatory/university, community adult, and professional flutists. From classical and sacred literature to jazz, folk songs, and show tunes, the ensemble has been delighting audiences since 1998. Past performances include concerts presented at New England Conservatory, appearances at the Boston Symphony Orchestra’s Open House, the BSO’s Symphony Café, Boston’s Faneuil Hall, and Boston’s French Library. The Metropolitan Flute Orchestra commissioned the award winning composition The Academie of Dance by Catherine McMichael. The select ensemble of the Metropolitan Flute Orchestra was selected and performed during National Flute Association Conventions in 2000 (Columbus, OH), 2006 (Pittsburgh, PA), 2009 (New York City, NY), 2011 (Charlotte, NC), and 2015 (Washington DC.) as well as presenting concert tours in France (2001), Ireland (2008), Germany, Austria, and Slovakia (2012), Hungary, Poland, and the Czech Republic (2014), England and Scotland (2016), Iceland (2018), and Belgium and Luxembourg (2022). While in New York City in 2009, the ensemble, one of four ensembles selected from across the U.S., performed live with Sir James Galway in Times Square for a brief FOX TV News broadcast. Very soon, after today’s concert, the Metropolitan Flute Orchestra will present a concert tour in Switzerland, with concerts in Basel, Crans-Montana, and Lucerne. 

Program Notes

Sit back and relax as the Metropolitan Flute Festival Orchestra transports you to the idyllic countryside of the Swiss Alps performing spectacular mountain top music. This 20th anniversary celebratory concert, Metropolitan Mountain Top Celebration, will also feature music by several American composers, as well as some of the Metropolitan Flute Orchestra’s favorite music. 

Danse Nègre from African Suite, Op. 35 by Samuel Coleridge-Taylor, brings us to our first mountain top experience, as we are carried to the majestic mountains of Sierra Leone. With images of swirling winds and beautiful vistas, this dance features an exciting main theme, a lyrical development section and an energetic coda. Known to his family as Coleridge, Samuel Coleridge Taylor was born on August 15, 1875 in Holborn, London, England. His father, Dr. Peter Hughes Taylor, a Krio from Sierra Leone, was a prominent administrator in West Africa. Dr. Taylor was visiting London and met an English woman, Alice Hare Martin, who is Coleridge’s mother. Coleridge spent his childhood in Croydon, Surry, England, where he studied violin with his grandfather. He also sang in the church choir. At 15, he was accepted to the Royal College of Music. During his second year, he changed his major from violin to composition. At the age of 20, Coleridge met the African-American poet Paul Laurence Dunbar who encouraged Coleridge to focus on his African heritage. As a result, Coleridge composed his African Suite for piano in 1898. There are four movements, each depicting different African experiences. The most well known movement is the final movement, Danse Nègre. As a highly respected composer, Coleridge is remembered for numerous excellent compositions and as a man of integrity. He died of pneumonia in 1912. Carved on his gravestone is a tribute by his good friend, poet Alfred Noyes: “Too young to die: his great simplicity, his happy courage in an alien world, his gentleness, made all that know him love him.”

Of Mountains, Lakes and Mischief, by MET contrabass flutist Phyllis Avidan Louke, is dedicated in memory of well known flutist Eldred Spell, and commissioned by Townes Osborn Miller, and many of Eldred’s devoted students and friends, past and present. Dr. Eldred Spell was the flute professor at Western Carolina University in Cullowhee, North Carolina for 35 years. He loved teaching and considered his students as the most important part of his career. His reputation as a teacher, performer and piccolo head joint maker was truly international. The first movement, the hauntingly beautiful Mountain Prayer, opens with a tender piccolo solo and expands to a lovely and reverent melody depicting Eldred’s deep love of the North Carolina mountains.* Today we hear Townes, one of Eldred’s former students, play this beautiful piccolo solo.

MET contrabass flutist Jonathan Cohen originally wrote Usonia as a fanfare for concert band, the Montgomery Village Community Band, in Maryland. The name Usonia would be all but forgotten had it not been adopted by Frank Lloyd Wright, the most influential of America architects. At the turn of the twentieth century, several authors advocated the term Usona, or its nicer-sounding variant, Usonia, as a term for the United States. Derived from United States of North America, it avoided the ambiguity of the term America and possible confusion with the Union of South Africa. According to Jonathan, he expanded the Usonia fanfare and scored the piece for orchestra. In its final form for flute orchestra, this piece is inspired by generalizations of Frank Lloyd Wright’s vision. It is meant to be uncomplicated, hopeful and bold as it celebrates the ability to start afresh, the beauty of simplicity, the power of repeated and layered simple ideas to construct the most sublime, and the twin roles of individuality and community in all.**

Antonin Dvorak’s Symphony No. 9 in E Minor, Op. 95 “From the New World” is perhaps this Bohemian composer’s most well know and loved composition. Premiered at Carnegie Hall on December 16, 1893, the “New World” Symphony was the first work Dvorak completed during his 2½ year stay in America or his “new world.” The Allegro con fuoco from this symphony is one of the MET Flute Orchestra’s favorite pieces and today’s performance is in memory of MET flutist Judith Pinsker. In 1888, wealthy American arts patron, Jeannette Meyer Thurber, founded the National Conservatory of Music in New York City. In 1891, Thurber’s wish was to find a musical director for the conservatory with an international reputation. Many American musicians were very interested in the position, but American music had not yet developed a global reputation. So, Thurber invited Antonin Dvorak to become the director of the conservatory. At the time, Dvorak was a music professor at the Prague Conservatory in Austria-Hungary, which is now known as the Czech Republic. In 1892, Dvorak accepted the position as the director of the National Music Conservatory, which was the forerunner of what we today know as The Juilliard School. While in New York, Dvorak began composing works with a distinct American flavor. Using melodies and motifs reminiscent of American folk tunes, Dvorak masterfully created his famous Symphony No 9. This began a legacy to a style of music that was distinctly American. On July 20, 2014, the Metropolitan Flute Orchestra premiered the flute orchestra arrangement of Dvorak’s Allegro con fuoco from the New World Symphony. Director Paige Long created this arrangement for the ensemble’s 2014 concert tour to Hungary, Poland, and the Czech Republic.

Swiss composer Joachim Raff’s Dance of the Dyrads is the third movement from his Symphony No. 3 in F Major, Op. 153 – “Im Walde” (In the Forest). This short scherzo movement is full of energy and excitement. The musical character totally changes in the trio section to a gentle, lyrical motif, before returning to the spirited main theme. In the ending coda section, listeners are left with musical images of woodland creatures dancing and scampering away. Raff is not a well known composer now, but in his time, he was quite famous. His music is still widely performed today. Born in Switzerland, Raff was basically a self-taught musician. He composed pieces for piano and sent one of his compositions to Felix Mendelssohn. Mendelssohn liked it so much that it was published, on the recommendation by Mendelssohn. Later, Raff became an assistant to Franz Liszt, working on orchestrations for some of Liszt’s symphonic poems. Raff composed 11 symphonies, 2 violin concertos, 2 cello concertos, 1 piano concerto, and numerous pieces of chamber music.

Today’s performance features the world premiere of Paige Dashner Long’s Metropolitan Flute Fantasy, composed to commemorate this celebratory 20th Anniversary Concert of the Metropolitan Flute Festival Orchestra. The opening theme of this exciting fantasy is inspired by Boston composer George Whitefield Chadwick’s Jubilee from Symphonic Sketches. After a lyrical middle section, the piece concludes in grand Boston style—a mash-up with snippets of Yankee Doodle and Sousa’s Stars and Stripes combined for an exciting conclusion. These Boston musical influences are very fitting. Chadwick studied at the New England Conservatory, later returned to teach at the conservatory, and ultimately became the Director of New England Conservatory from 1897-1930. The Metropolitan Flute Orchestra was founded by Paige Dashner Long at New England Conservatory in 1998. In 2002, Paige began the highly successful Summer Metropolitan Flute Festival, which continued every summer at New England Conservatory, until the pandemic in 2020. After a two year hiatus due to the pandemic, the Summer Metropolitan Flute Festival emerged again in 2023 at the new Groton Hill Music Center in Groton, Massachusetts. When thinking about Boston, what immediately comes to mind is the Boston Pops Orchestra playing Sousa’s Stars and Stripes during a 4th of July concert on the Esplanade. Another Boston image is Yankee Doodle. Since south Boston has a large Irish influence, this fantasy combines a short phrase of Yankee Doodle in the style of an Irish jig. Mix in a little of Stars and Stripes and you have a Boston celebration!

Amanda Harberg’s Prayer is a deeply personal piece in reaction to the composer’s life experiences. As Harberg describes it: “The piece comes from a deeply spiritual place. For me, it is both a meditation on life, and an expression of faith in the language that is most powerful for me, and on the powerful mysteries of healing.” With long melodic lines beginning gently, the music builds and becomes increasing powerful, arcing twice then falling away to serenity. Originally composed for viola and piano, Prayer has transformed into many different musical settings, including this flute orchestra version that you enjoy today. This arrangement was commissioned by four MET flutists: Deborah Rebeck Ash, Sharyn Byer, Jenny Cline, and director Paige Dashner Long.

Paige Dashner Long’s energetic ContraJam! set the world record for the largest number of contrabass flutes in performance. ContraJam! was premiered during the 2024 International Low Flutes Festival in Washington, DC. The ensemble, directed by Paige, was comprised of 40 contrabass flutists from all over the world, including sub contrabass flutes and double contrabass flutes. There was not a single piccolo, concert flute, alto flute, or bass flute in that premiere performance. It was truly a ContraJam! This piece also is scored for traditional flute choirs, as you hear it today. With a jammin’ blues groove, the piece begins with a contrabass flute soli section. Soon, the entire ensemble joins in with percussive sounds, adding to the groove. Next comes a very sticky sassy-frass jelly tune that will have you tapping your toes. ContraJam! ends with an energetic Gospel marmalade, including a jammin’ bass line. This composition is filled with memorable tunes of jams, jellies, and marmalades that will become musically well “preserved” in our minds.

Traditional Swiss composer Ferdinand Huber set music to this well known Swiss poem: Lueget vo Bärg und Tal (Look from the Mountains and Vales). Describing scenes of the sun setting over the magnificent Swiss Alps, this peaceful folk song depicts the country people resting after a day’s work and contemplating the natural beauty that surrounds them. Based on lyrics by Swiss historian Josef Anton Henne, this folk song is dearly loved and sung often by the Swiss people.

LOOK, FROM THE MOUNTAINS AND VALES

Look, from the mountains and vales; vanish the sunlight’s last rays
Look, now are darkening shadows spreading on pastures and meadows
Summits and gloaming have wed: O, how the glaciers are red!

Look down there on the lake! Homeward the cattle again:
Hark, how the cowbells are ringing; hear them a lullaby singing.
Music to us and a bliss- homeland sounds that we would miss!

Silently it’s getting dark; we know the Lord’s our guard.
You see the little star shining? Little star, why are you smiling!
There – wrapped in mist now – the star: Greetings and say how you are!

Listen, it says: Fine, up there! I know that I’m in God’s care.
Therefore the father of all certainly won’t let me fall.
Father in heaven, your might grants stars and us a good night!

Ride the Matterhorn by Leonard LeBow brings the audience slipping and sliding down the steep slopes of the formidable Matterhorn. The Matterhorn’s characteristically pyramid shape makes this colossus mountain difficult to climb or ski. Buckle up your ski boots and enjoy this musical and thrilling ride down one of the most famous slopes in Europe.

Today’s encore, LeRoy Anderson’s Fluter’s Holiday, is typically known as Bugler’s Holiday and features three solo trumpets. During the summer of 1954, Anderson wrote this “fun piece” to show off the virtuosity of both accomplished and amateur musicians. Today, three solo MET flutists effortlessly tackle the virtuoso solo parts to this piece that is frequently performed worldwide. Celebrating the Metropolitan Flute Orchestra’s upcoming holiday and concert tour to Switzerland, this performance begins our Swiss holiday adventure.

Program notes written by Paige Dashner Long
*Excerpt written by Phyllis Avidan Louke
**Excerpt written by Jonathan Cohen

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