Pixel Tracker

Tuesday, February 19 , 2019, 9:23 am | Fair 52º


CAMA Wraps Up Season with Seattle Symphony

Wednesday's performance pays tribute to Richard I, Richard II, and Samuel the Only.

The Seattle Symphony Orchestra — conducted by music director Gerard Schwarz and with the sublime, enigmatic Nadja Salerno-Sonnenberg as violin soloist — will headline the last subscription concert of the Community Arts Music Association‘s 2007-08 season. The performance begins at 8 p.m. Wednesday at the Arlington Theatre.


The CAMA program will consist of three Excerpts from Act III of Die Meistersinger von Nürnberg by Richard Wagner, the Concerto for Violin and Orchestra, Opus 14, by Samuel Barber, and two pieces by Richard Strauss, his tone poem, Don Juan, Opus 20 and the Suite from his most popular opera, Der Rosenkavalier, Opus 59.

Since few who will attend this concert will be hearing any of these works — even the Barber — for the first time, it will not be necessary to attempt to describe or characterize the music. It is all romantic, romantic times ten, and it is music like this that used to make going to a classical music concert such a thrilling experience.

The set-up for Die Meistersinger — a singing contest — is almost as corny and obvious as the fourth act of Die Fledermaus. In spite of that — or, rather, because of it — Die Meistersinger has enjoyed an enduring popularity. It is nearly the odd man out, being a lyric comedy, among Wagner’s operas that Ah, Wilderness! is among the plays of Eugene O’Neill. Even anti-Wagnerians tend to like it.

Barber’s Violin Concerto is the greatest concerted work yet penned by an American. It was commissioned by a wealthy Philadelphian for a protégé, but when it was completed, the young violinist whined that the first and second movements were not sufficiently bravura, and that the last movement was unplayable. Seldom has immortality been more petulantly flung away.

The mood of the concerto is somber and wistful, a melancholy lament for the Europe that was once again (1939) about to attempt suicide. It is a haunting, gorgeous work, and you may be sure that Salerno-Sonnenberg will make the most of it. Pay particular attention to the second movement, with the haunting main theme first stated by the oboe, then taken up sadly, almost reluctantly, by the violin. It is, not to put too fine a point on it, a masterpiece.

There is, finally, something almost indecent about Richard Strauss’ skill at orchestral scoring. When he was still in his teens, he was helping Wagner rework the horn call in Siegfried. He was called "Richard II," since he was so obviously carrying on the music drama by Wagner’s rules. His music is voluptuous to a degree, tuneful and mesmerizing. There is virtually no musical or dramatic effect that is beyond his powers. Call it decadent if you will, but if you think his music should be kept out of the concert halls and off the opera stages, you might as well close them down and padlock the doors. His music is as close as most people get to ecstasy, and there is no downside.

Tickets range from $35 to $75. Click here to order online or contact the Arlington Theatre Ticket Agency, 1317 State St., at 805.963.4408.

Talk to Us!

Please take Noozhawk's audience survey to help us understand what you expect — and want — from us. It'll take you just a few minutes. Thank you!

Get Started >

Support Noozhawk Today

You are an important ally in our mission to deliver clear, objective, high-quality professional news reporting for Santa Barbara, Goleta and the rest of Santa Barbara County. Join the Hawks Club today to help keep Noozhawk soaring.

We offer four membership levels: $5 a month, $10 a month, $25 a month or $1 a week. Payments can be made using a credit card, Apple Pay or Google Pay, or click here for information on recurring credit-card payments and a mailing address for checks.

Thank you for your vital support.

Become a Noozhawk Supporter

First name
Last name
Select your monthly membership
Or choose an annual membership

Payment Information

Membership Subscription

You are enrolling in . Thank you for joining the Hawks Club.

Payment Method

Pay by Credit Card:

Mastercard, Visa, American Express, Discover
One click only, please!

Pay with Apple Pay or Google Pay:

Noozhawk partners with Stripe to provide secure invoicing and payments processing.
You may cancel your membership at any time by sending an email to .(JavaScript must be enabled to view this email address).

  • Ask
  • Vote
  • Investigate
  • Answer

Noozhawk Asks: What’s Your Question?

Welcome to Noozhawk Asks, a new feature in which you ask the questions, you help decide what Noozhawk investigates, and you work with us to find the answers.

Here’s how it works: You share your questions with us in the nearby box. In some cases, we may work with you to find the answers. In others, we may ask you to vote on your top choices to help us narrow the scope. And we’ll be regularly asking you for your feedback on a specific issue or topic.

We also expect to work together with the reader who asked the winning questions to find the answer together. Noozhawk’s objective is to come at questions from a place of curiosity and openness, and we believe a transparent collaboration is the key to achieve it.

The results of our investigation will be published here in this Noozhawk Asks section. Once or twice a month, we plan to do a review of what was asked and answered.

Thanks for asking!

Click Here to Get Started >

Reader Comments

Noozhawk is no longer accepting reader comments on our articles. Click here for the announcement. Readers are instead invited to submit letters to the editor by emailing them to [email protected]. Please provide your full name and community, as well as contact information for verification purposes only.