Vincent Persichetti / Grind
On this day in classical music: Vincent Persichetti’s “Symphony No. 6” (“Symphony for Band”), was given its premiere in 1956. Persichetti was a prolific composer who was also a member of the Juilliard School faculty. The “Symphony for Band” quickly entered the repertoire and has remained one of his most popular works. The poignant second movement was taken from the composer’s “Hymns and Responses for the Church Year.” Listen to the Concordia College Band perform the second movement Adagio. http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=NICaBas-4jA
On this day in the musical theatre: “Grind,” a flop that opened in 1985, offered a lively portrait of a burlesque house in 1930’s Chicago. Despite a paltry run of 79 performances, Leilani Jones earned a Tony Award for her role as a black stripper named Satin.
Theatrical musings: “Grind” arrived on Broadway at the end of one of the worst musical seasons ever. “Grind” was a show so loaded with characters, ideas, themes and plots that it tended to bewilder and turn off a first-time viewer. It tried to do too much, and there were too many diverse elements … that did not easily fit together. “Grind” was an uncompromising show that attempted to say something; unfortunately, because of all that was going on, sympathy for and understanding of the characters was only possible with second or third viewings. The show’s seven Tony nominations kept the show open but “Grind” closed shortly after the awards were distributed, losing $4.75 million. – From Not Since Carrie: 40 Years of Broadway Musical Flops, by Ken Mandelbaum.
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