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American Players
Theatre stars…

Sun., January 20, 2019
2:30 p.m.

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Music Program:
Mendelssohn | Symphony No. 4

John DeMain, Conductor
Sarah Day, Actor
Nate Burger, Actor
Jonathan SmootsActor

Read the Program Notes


With this multimedia presentation of Beyond the Score® you’ll discover the inspiration of Mendelssohn’s travels through Italy, his impressions of what he saw, and how he set them to music. For the people who already love the piece it’s a chance to get to know the ingredients even better. It’s also a chance for listeners to fall in love with a piece that they don’t know, and through this process, they will.  – John DeMain

Beyond the Score®: Mendelssohn — Symphony No. 4: Why Italy?

One Performance Only
January 20, 2019 2:30pm
Live actors | Visual projections | Entire work performed in the second half

Beyond the Score®
Discover what inspired the creation of this great work of art. Beyond the Score® is a multimedia experience that reveals the illuminating stories found “inside” the score. The first half of the program features live actors, visual illustrations, and musical examples. Following intermission, you’ll experience Mendelssohn’s Symphony No. 4 in its entirety — listening with a deeper understanding of the composer and the music.

Why Italy?
In 1830, the young 21-year-old composer Felix Mendelssohn visited the countryside of Italy, visiting the historic cities of Venice, Naples and Rome among others. Three years later, Mendelssohn’s journey to Italy was set to music in this buoyant symphonic work, later to be known as his Italian Symphony. While most of Mendelssohn’s contemporaries ceased to write symphonies following the death of Beethoven, Mendelssohn set out to discover his own compositional voice within this traditional form. Incorporating the composer’s own letters and writings, this program presents the historical context behind this symphonic masterpiece. Actors, multimedia content, and live orchestral musical examples demonstrate Mendelssohn’s compositional approach towards depicting his enchantment with the Italian countryside.

“…what made the presentation work as an experience that really changed my perception of the work was the high degree of artistry applied to the presentation. It wasn’t the information that got to me, it was the art.”  – League of American Orchestras

Beyond the Score® is a production of the Chicago Symphony Orchestra.
Gerard McBurney, Creative Director for Beyond the Score®

Online, or visit or call the Overture Center Box Office, 201 State St., (608) 258-4141

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2:30 pm - 5:00 pm
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Overture Center for the Arts
201 State Street
Madison, WI 53703
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