Mississippi Suite / Grand Canyon
Grofe's popular Grand Canyon Suite, derived from his early period roaming the desert and mountain country as an itinerant pianist, is in five sections, each inspired by the imposing beauty of America's mighty natural wonder. It was first performed by Paul Whiteman and his Orchestra in Chicago's Studebaker Theater on 22nd November 1931, to considerable critical acclaim. The evocative four-movement Mississippi (A Tone Journey) - A Descriptive Suite of 1926 is generally now known as the Mississippi Suite. The great American river, celebrated in history, legend and art, recalls in its very name memories of great explorers, the feats of Paul Bunyan and the adventures of Huckleberry Finn and Tom Sawyer. Among Grofe's last major works was a commission from the New York State Power Authority, to commemorate the opening of the largest power plant at Niagara Falls, the Roben Moses Power Plant, On l0th February 1961, Ferde Grofe was there to conduct the Buffalo Philharmonic in the first performance of his Niagara Falls Suite. The suite, crafted by a master orchestrator, offers a vivid depiction of one of America's most magnificent sights.