Halim El-Dabh: Suites & Symphonies
SUITES & SYMPHONIES HALIM EL-DABH The Composer Halim El-Dabh is one of the most renowned Egyptian composers. An innovator in sound, and in color music and graphic notations, he has composed six symphonic works, ten operas, and numerous chamber and solo pieces. His works have been performed on all continents. He has researched in ethnomusicology in Africa and other continents. El-Dabh compositions often incorporate sound from the cultures he has interacted with on distant and not so distant lands. Among the noteworthy artists he has created music for are Martha Graham, Leopold Stokowski, Rollou Manou, Rudolf Nureyev, and Dame Margot Fontaine. Each night the Sound & Light show at the Great Pyramids of Giza recounts the ancient history of the Pharaohs with music written by El-Dabh. Presently he is University Professor Emeritus at Kent State University in Kent, Ohio teaching 'African Cultural Expressions'. CLYTEMNESTRA SUITE Clytemnestra Suite is the symphonic rendition of the epic dance drama 'Clytemnestra' which Halim El-Dabh composed for The Martha Graham Dance Company and premeired on Broadway in 1958. The suite is composed of various short movements depicted from the original work and is designed for concert halls rather than dance theaters. The music style is classical contemporary with a unique example of 20th Century music. The music employs innovative treatments of melody, harmony and rythmn. The melodies intermingle withe the tapestry of sound textures sometimes shreiking, groaning and moaning with exuberance. It portrays a freshness of sound which connects the dark underworld of Hades who condemns Clytemnestra among the dead. Here the composer adds an Egyptian idea of rebirth to those who become conscious of their crimes. Cassandra the seer with compassionate themes retold the agonies and pleasures of the Aasehylus oracle. SYMPHONY # 3 Symphony no.3 was composed by Halim El-Dabh in Cairo, Egypt in 1953 and read by the Cairo Symphony Orchestra that same year. Thirty seven years later the work was slightly revised and premiered by The Springfield Symphony Orchestra of Ohio under the baton of John Ferritto. The first movement opens with an invigorating sound and a vivid colorful contexture through the use of percussion and strings, balanced with majestic wind harmonies and brass. The second movement which is deep in the human soul with it's' haunting flute solo. This was accompanied by poetic responses from the strings and by wind, brass and percussion. The third movement portrays the composer's mystical connection with the number thirteen encompassing the mystery and enigma of the living forces emanating from the orchestration bespeaking the feelings of fear, hope and love. CLYTEMNESTRA New England Conservatory 'Orchestral Elaborations' Conducted by Nathaniel Chase February 5, 2008 1. Hades - The Underworld 2:41 2. The Watchman Waiting One Hundred Years for the Beacon 3:26 3. Dance of Jubilation 2:05 4. Aegistus 1:36 5. Helen of Troy and Paris 4:16 6. The Return of Clytemnestra 1:13 7. Clytemnestra's Ceremonial Death for Agamemnon 6:49 8. Cassandra - The Prophesies Retold 5:01 SYMPHONY No.3 The Springfield Symphony Orchestra Conducted by John Ferritto March 7, 1992 9. Symphony No. 3 - First Movement 10:25 10. Symphony No. 3 - Second Movement 7:34 11. Symphony No. 3 Third Movement 8:12 New England Conservatory New England Conservatory is recognized nationally and internationally as a leader among music schools. They offer rigorous training in an intimate, nurturing community to undergraduate and graduate students from around the world. Their faculty boasts of internationally esteemed artists, teachers and scholars. Halim El-Dabh's Clytemnestra Suite was first presented by NEC's Composer Series, which is dedicated to performing the works of students, faculty and alumni. El-Dabh is a graduate of the class of 1953 and is recipient of a NEC Honorary Doctor Degree in 2007. Performers in the NEC Composer's Series include NEC students and invited guests. It's alumni go on to fill orchestra chairs, concert hall stages, jazz clubs, recording studios, arts management and teaching -composing positions worldwide such as that of Halim El-Dabh. The Springfield Symphony Orchestra The Springfield Symphony Orchestra was founded in 1943 and is composed of 72 musicians. The Orchestra is dedicated to performing classical masterworks, light classical music and special concerts promoting contemporary music such as Halim El-Dabh's Symphony No. 3. They stimulate their community' educational programs by giving pre concert lectures, and organizing youth orchestras. 'The Springfield Symphony Orchestra is a dedicated community of musicians whose passionate, synergetic quest for music, performed at the highest artistic level, is contagious. Achieving this in such a sensational hall, and with such an enthusiastic, enlightened audience is what making live music should be all about!' - Peter Stafford Wilson, Music Director and Conductor of the Symphony Thanks to David Badagnani and Mohammed Fairouz for organization!