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Monday, December 22, 2014
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 Recent Reviews
SYMPHONY
SYMPHONY'S STRAVINSKY A WIND AND RHYTHMIC FEAST
by Terry McNeill
Monday, December 08, 2014
Santa Rosa Symphony conductor Bruno Ferrandis put together a curious program mix Dec. 8 in Weill Hall that on paper promised a culture clash, but actually delivered a memorable musical experience. Composers often fashion suites from orchestral works, and just as often the shorter suite can be more ...
RECITAL
GOING BAROQUE!
by James Harrod
Sunday, November 30, 2014
Virtuoso organist Charles Rus returned to the Bay Area and Sonoma County November 30th to perform a dazzling recital of Baroque organ music. Mr. Rus channeled the souls of the great 17th century giants of organ composition into the beautiful newly installed pipe organ in Sonoma State’s Schroeder Hal...
CHAMBER
CLARINET VIRTUOSITY AND SONOROUS NEW MUSIC IN SCHROEDER CONCERT
by Nicki Bell
Tuesday, November 25, 2014
Some new music got a hearing Nov. 25 in Schroeder Hall when the Trio Ariadne, in their second year of SSU residency, played a world premiere as well as a repertoire staple. The evening’s small and appreciative audience was treated to a Poulenc Clarinet Sonata performance sandwiched between novel in...
SYMPHONY
A PIANIST AND ORCHESTRA IN NEED OF A PIANO
by Terry McNeill
Saturday, November 15, 2014
Sonoma County Philharmonic conductor Norman Gamboa mounted a crackerjack program Nov. 15 to end the Philharmonic's 2014 calendar year. It was a balanced menu of dramatic orchestral playing, beguiling choral works and an intriguing piano soloist in Santa Rosa's High School Auditorium. The evening's ...
SYMPHONY
A CELLO CONCERTO FROM A DISTANT WORLD
by Terry McNeill
Monday, November 10, 2014
Several surprises characterized the Santa Rosa Symphony’s Nov. 10 Weill Hall concert, the first being an almost full house on a Monday night after the same program was heard the two previous days. The important surprise was how well the audience liked the thorny Dutilleux cello concerto, Tout un...
RECITAL
ROBUST PLAYING IN KENNER'S ANGELICO HALL DEBUT RECITAL
by Terry McNeill
Sunday, November 09, 2014
Europe-based Kevin Kenner chose a husky program for his Marin debut recital Nov. 9 in Dominican University’s Angelico Hall, and elected three masterpieces from the Romantic piano literature. Schubert’s C Major “Wanderer” Fantasy has nearly disappeared from recital programs, but it was a deft openi...
RECITAL
CHAMBER MUSIC MASTERY IN VALLEJO SYMPHONY ORCHESTRA CONCERT
by Elizabeth Warnimont
Sunday, November 09, 2014
The Vallejo Symphony Orchestra presented the first small group performance of its 2014-2015 season Nov. 9 in the casual setting of Vallejo’s First Presbyterian Church. Clarinetist Diane Maltester wowed the audience with stunning performances of pieces by well-known and rarely heard composers. “Dian...
RECITAL
FRANCK ORGAN WORKS SUBLIMELY PLAYED BY MANWELL IN CAS RECITAL
by Jim Harrod
Sunday, October 26, 2014
Organist Philip Manwell played a sublime recital of the major organ works of César Franck October 26 at Santa Rosa’s Resurrection Parish. The concert was a delightful treat both for those not acquainted with Franck’s organ music and for the many organists in the audience who have studied the Belgian...
CHAMBER
A BRUCH SURPRISE IN TRIO'S SCHROEDER CONCERT
by Terry McNeill
Sunday, October 26, 2014
Part of the Trio Navarro’s sterling reputation rests with the rare repertoire they perform. So it was a bit of a surprise Oct. 26 in Schroeder Hall when they programmed popular works by Beethoven and Rachmaninoff. Somehow Max Bruch pieces managed to sneak into the mix. The Bruch in a way stole th...
SYMPHONY
DARK SPIRITS IN SPOOKY ANDERSON AND ROE WEILL PROGRAM
by Sonia Tubridy
Friday, October 24, 2014
The Anderson and Roe piano duo have been a force in the music world for over a decade. Their arrangements and performances present virtuoso abilities and commitment to engaging audiences in the beauty and drama of classical music, juxtaposed with contemporary artists' music of other genres. The conc...
Local Concerts  
CHAMBER REVIEW
Mastercard Performance Series / Friday, December 12, 2014
New Century Chamber Orchestra. Nadja Salerno-Sonnenberg, director. San Francisco Girls Chorus

Nadja Salerno-Sonnenberg and the NCCO in Weill Hall Dec. 12

NEW CENTURY AND SF CHORUS CHARMS WEILL AUDIENCE IN CHRISTMAS PROGRAM

by Sonia Tubridy
Friday, December 12, 2014

On December 12 a good-sized audience came out of the cold evening into the warmth and light of Weill Hall, and soon the regal warmth and light of beautiful music filled the auditorium and hearts of those present. Violinist Nadja Salerno-Sonnenberg with New Century Chamber Orchestra launched into a spirited rendition of the Entrance of the Queen of Sheba from Handel’s Oratorio “Solomon,” HWV 87. It was a burst of joy and immediately showed how extraordinary this chamber orchestra of 19 string players can be. NCCO is a collaborative ensemble and they play with a commitment and sense of musical intent that is breathtaking.

Ms. Salerno-Sonnenberg addressed the audience and told about the program, including favorite selections and composers that NCCO and the San Francisco Girls Chorus had put together: Handel, Vivaldi, Corelli, carols, instrumental and choral pieces to make us all happy. The variety, beauty, old favorites, fresh interpretations created a festive musical experience.

The evening continued with the the Corelli Concerto Grosso Op. 6, No. 8, "Christmas Concerto,” full of lively and poignant passages and exquisite solo and ensemble playing. The music was dynamically nuanced and the orchestra seemed to breathe and soar as one musical soul. Next, the San Francisco Girls Chorus presented “Radiant Stars” by Caesar Cui a cappella, and then Vaughan Williams' Four Songs of Winter together with orchestra. The chorus excelled with warm tone and a range of vocal colors that was a delight. The balance between voices and instruments was exceptionally good, a challenge for most choral performances with orchestra.

Vivaldi's "Winter" from the Four Seasons with Ms. Salerno-Sonnenberg on solo violin was a miracle of fresh and intriguing moments. This often performed piece was imbued with new excitement, nuances and cascades of joy. It was a spontaneous and exhilarating presentation. An audience member commented to me during the intermission that there could not be enough superlative words of praise to describe the violinist’s virtuosity with the NCCO.

Following the break the SF Girls Chorus returned with NCCO to sing Mozart's “Engel Gottes Kunden” (two sopranos with flute and strings, KV. 519) and Rutter's Nativity Carol with a charm and clarity, and then performed a traditional medley of seasonal carols. This rich program concluded with Bach's Brandenburg Concerto No. 3 (BWV 1048) and the Hallelujah Chorus from Handel's great Messiah Oratorio. The Bach had the effect of being completely familiar but also brought to new and vibrant life. All phrases had intent and direction. The music really mattered to the musicians and I was swept into their enthusiasm. The Handel Chorus was beautifully arranged by C. Assad for the Girls Chorus and they were able to keep the sound vibrant and clear in Weill’s sterling acoustic setting. Two encores allowed musicians and audience some happy moments together.

As we left this remarkable concert many noted that this event had fulfilled a hope of sending us home happy and content, with gifts of joyous musical memories to carry us through the holidays and beyond.




Events Calendar

CHAMBER
Festival Consort
Sunday, January 04, 2015
4:00 PM - Santa Rosa
Joanna Bramel Young, David Hogan Smith, Alan Paul and Robert Cronin. Carol Menke, soprano; Christop
Program: European carols and works by Praetorius, di Lasso and TBA. Instruments used include recorders, shawms, crumhorns, sackbut, curtal, schreyerpfeiffen, douçain and guitar Tickets are $15 at th...
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CHAMBER
Music at Oakmont
Thursday, January 08, 2015
1:30 PM - Santa Rosa
Edward Aaron, cello; Jeewon Park, piano
Beethoven: Variations on the theme "Bei Mãnnern" from Mozart's "Magic Flute," WoO 46; Sonata in C Major, Op. 102, No. 1; Piazzolla: Le Grand Tango; Rachmaninoff: G Minor Sonata, Op. 19 The concert is...
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SYMPHONY
Santa Rosa Symphony
Saturday, January 10, 2015
8:00 PM - Rohnert Park
Michael Christie, conductor. Mark O'Connor, violin
O'Connor: Fiddle Concerto; Copland: Suite from Bill the Kid: Copland: El Salón México...
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SYMPHONY
Santa Rosa Symphony
Sunday, January 11, 2015
3:00 PM - Rohnert Park
Michael Christie, conductor. Mark O'Connor, violin
Copland: Suite from Billy the Kid and El Salón México; O'Connor: Fiddle Concerto...
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CHAMBER
Napa Valley Music Associates
Sunday, January 11, 2015
3:00 PM - Napa
Jassen Todorov, violin; Anna Combs-Johnson, soprano; Kenn Gartner, piano
Mozart in Napa Valley. Program TBA $20; $25 at the door...
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CHAMBER
Soper Reese Theater - Mendocino Classical
Sunday, January 11, 2015
3:00 PM - Lakeport
Aaron Ames, piano; Beth Aiken, oboe; Nick Biondo, clarinet; Randy Masselink, horn; Ann Hubbard, bass
The Soper Reese Theatre presents a series La Voce del Vento (Voice of the Wind). The chamber series features woodwind instruments. Beethoven: Quintet in E-Flat Major, Op. 16: Mozart: Quintet oboe, c...
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SYMPHONY
Santa Rosa Symphony
Monday, January 12, 2015
8:00 PM - Rohnert Park
Michael Christie, conductor. Mark O'Connor, violin
...
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CHAMBER
Redwood Arts Council
Saturday, January 17, 2015
8:00 PM - Occidental
KWPC Baroque: Kathleen Kraft, flute; David Wilson, violin; Farley Pearse, cello and viola da gamba;
Music of Bach, LeClair, Telemann and more from the Italian School ...
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RECITAL
Green Music Center
Sunday, January 18, 2015
3:00 PM - Rohnert Park
David McCarroll, violin; Roy Bogas, piano
Program TBA...
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CHAMBER
Farallon Quintet
Sunday, January 18, 2015
3:00 PM - Sonoma
Farallon Quintet. Natalie Parker, clarinet; Dan Flanagan and Matthew Oshibe, violin; Elizabeth Prio
Weber: Clarinet Quintet in B Flat Major; Mozart: Allegro in B Flat for clarinet, two violins, viola and cello, K.App.91; Glazunov: Oriental Reverie; Durwynne Hsieh: Clarinet Quintet; Alexander Krein: ...
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