UGA Symphony Orchestra Concert

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The UGA Symphony Orchestra (UGASO) performs its second concert of the season in Hodgson Concert Hall on Thursday, March 8 at 8 p.m.


Conducted by Mark Cedel, director of the UGASO, the orchestra will perform works by Gabriel Fauré, Ludwig Van Beethoven, and Béla Bartók.


Jean Gómez, an assistant conductor, will open the concert with Fauré’s Pelléas et Mélisande, Suite of incidental music to Maeterlinck’s tragedy, Op. 80. Premiering in 1898, the suite was inspired by Belgian playwright Maurice Maeterlinck and was written as incidental music to go with the play.


“Pelleas and Melisande open our concert with a forbidden love story in an unreal and mysterious context as if in a fairy tale,” says Jean. “It starts with the Prelude where Golaud finds Melisande by the creek in the woods, the second movement pictures Melisande in the spinner represented by the violins, and then the third movement reveals the love and happiness between our two lovers. Finally, a tragic ending with Melisande’s death in a melancholic lament that fades with the solo flute.”


Followed by Fauré, under the baton of Mr. Cedel, the orchestra will perform Beethoven’s Symphony No.8. Being one of the shortest symphonies, it’s aptly called “The Little Symphony in F major,” and has no slow movements. Unlike the ‘traditional’ second movements where lyrical and slow themes are played in contrast to the first movement, the second movement of this symphony depicts the sound of Johann Maelzel’s metronome. Maelzel, who worked with Beethoven, was the inventor of the metronome.


The final piece of the program will be Bartok’s Concerto for Orchestra. Bartók wrote a commentary for this piece, something he rarely did. It’s printed in the orchestra’s program book, and says:


“The general mood of the work represents, apart from the jesting second movement, a gradual transition from the sternness of the first movement and the lugubrious death-song of the third, to the life-assertion of the last one. The title of this symphony-like orchestral work is explained by its tendency to treat the single instruments or instrumental groups in a concertant or soloistic manner. The ‘virtuoso’ treatment appears, for instance, in the fugato sections of the development of the first movement (brass instruments), or in the perpetuum mobile-like passage of the principal theme in the last movement (strings), and, especially, in the second movement, in which pairs of instruments consecutively appear with brilliant passages.”


Tickets are $12 for adults and $6 with a UGA student ID and can be purchased at or by calling the PAC box office at 706-207-6844. Those unable to attend can watch the concert live on the Hodgson School’s website at