Les nuits d'été

The 2023-2024 Pontiac Enchanté season will end with a bang, featuring two spectacular pieces for large chamber ensemble.  The show starts with Berlioz's orchestral song cycle, Les nuits d'été (Summer Nights), performed here in an arrangement for six players with soprano.  The song cycle features six poems by Théophile Gautier, loosely following the progress of love from youthful innocence, to maturity, loss, and finally renewal.  The title of the cycle was chosen by Berlioz, and could be a reference to the title of a book by Joseph Méry, one of Berlioz's friends: Les nuits de Londres.  In his book, Méry writes of long summer nights where he and a group of friends would sit outside telling stories until dawn.  While we won't keep you in the hall that long, we hope that these atmospheric pieces will evoke the most perfect summer evenings imaginable for you.  After a break, the concert will finish with Ernő Dohnányi's exuberant Sextet in C, written for violin, viola, cello, clarinet, french horn, and piano.  Dohnányi was Hungarian, but lived and worked in Germany, Hungary, and eventually the United States, where he taught at Florida State University in Tallahassee.  His music drew on influences from Hungarian folk music, German romanticism, American folk music, ragtime, and jazz.  The Sextet touches on each of these - moments in the first movement sound like Mahler, while the last movement begins with a true ragtime theme.  We hope to send you off into a soft summer night with this celebratory, fun music resounding in your ears!

Sunday, June 30th, 2024         4:30pm


Hector Berlioz (1803-1869): Les nuits d'été, op. 7

Ernő Dohnányi (1877-1960): Sextet in C major, op. 37