Madison Symphony Orchestra
A History of the Madison Symphony Orchestra,
Please note that these chapters, now over 20 years old, will be
superseded by a much more exhaustively researched book on the
orchestra's history. I began work on this project after
retiring in 2018, with an eye towards completion before the
orchestra's 100th anniversary in 2026.
In early 2000, as it looked towards the 75th anniversary season
in 2000-2001, the MSO commissioned me to do a series of four
historical articles to detail the orchestra's history.
These articles, essentially a short four-chapter history of the
MSO from 1926-2001, were published in abridged format in the
orchestra's programs during the 2000-2001 season. I have
published the "unabridged" versions of these chapters here.
A Video Lecture on Sigfrid Prager
In October 2020, I put together a lecture on Prager's work in
Madison, based upon the chapter on him in the forthcoming
book. It is titled "Madison's
First Maestro: Dr. Sigfrid Prager."
Madison Symphony Orchestra: Chronicle 1926-2001
As an outgrowth of my research for the 2001 history, I complied
a comprehensive database listing every performance by the orchestra
and chorus in the first 75 seasons. The results, 75 Years
of the Madison Symphony Orchestra 1926-2001: Chronicle,
Repertoire, and Soloists, is available here. While this listing is almost
complete, there are a few programs of the 1930s If you are
interested in knowing whether a given piece has been played by the
MSO since 2001, nearly all of the repertoire we've played on
subscription programs is noted on my complete list of program notes.
Be aware, however, that this does not include operas, nor does it
list repertoire for MSO programs for which I did not write notes
(youth concerts, pops programs, outdoor concerts, etc.). It
also lists repertoire for other orchestras for whom I've written
notes. MSO repertoire is listed by season, without the
prefixes I've used to designate non-MSO repertoire. Note that
the comprehensive and complete list of repertoire, from 1926 to the
present, is currently maintained by the MSO administration.
However this listing is not generally available to the public.
Early Madison Civic Music Recordings
I have provided streaming versions of several early (1941-1955)
recordings of the orchestra and chorus here.
Feature Articles for the Wisconsin State
I have also included a couple of extended versions of feature
articles written for the Wisconsin State Journal,
last update: 10/16/2020