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Recital
ECLECTIC DRAMATIC PROGRAMING IN SPRING LAKE VILLAGE RECITAL
by Terry McNeill
Wednesday, September 11, 2019
Marin-based pianist Laura Magnani combined piquant remarks to an audience of 100 Sept. 11 with dramatic music making in a recital at Spring Lake Village’s Montgomery Center. Ms. Magnani’s eclectic programming in past SLV recitals continued, beginning with three sonatas by her Italian compatriot Sca...
Chamber
PERFORMER AS PROMOTER: CLARA SCHUMANN AND MUSICAL SALONS CLOSE VOM FESTIVAL
by Pamela Hicks Gailey
Sunday, July 28, 2019
The July 28 closing performance of the Valley of the Moon Chamber Music Festival could have been subtitled "Friends", as it was devoted to works by both Clara and Robert Schumann, and those of their friends and protégés Brahms and virtuoso violinist Joseph Joachim, with whom Clara toured extensively...
Chamber
ROMANTIC CHAMBER WORKS HIGHLIGHT VOM FESTIVAL AT HANNA CENTER
by Sonia Morse Tubridy
Saturday, July 27, 2019
Now in its 5th season the Valley of the Moon Chamber Music Festival presented July 27 a concert titled “My Brilliant Sister,” featuring Fanny Mendelssohn Hensel’s compositions for combinations of voice, fortepiano and strings. Fanny and her brother Felix were close, and Felix occasionally published ...
Symphony
ROMANTIC DREAMS AT THE MENDOCINO MUSIC FESTIVAL
by Kayleen Asbo
Wednesday, July 24, 2019
Romanticism, contrary to many popular perceptions, wasn’t simply about diving into the habitat of the heart. Romanticism began as a literary movement that elevated the power of nature as a transcendent force and sought with keen nostalgia to rediscover the wisdom of the past. The Romantics in both l...
Chamber
CHAUSSON CONCERTO SHINES IN A VISIONARY'S SALON
by Steve Osborn
Sunday, July 21, 2019
Ernest Chausson’s four-movement Concerto in D Major for Violin, Piano, and String Quartet (1891) is neither concerto nor sonata nor symphony, but it somehow manages to be all three, especially when played with fire and conviction by an accomplished soloist. Those incendiary and emotional elements w...
Chamber
EUROPEAN SALON MUSIC CAPTIVATES AT VOM FESTIVAL CONCERT
by Pamela Hicks Gailey
Sunday, July 21, 2019
Two stunning programs of 19th and 20th century chamber music were presented on July 21 and 28 as part of the Valley of the Moon Music Festival at the Hanna Center in Sonoma. Festival founders and directors pianist Eric Zivian and cellist Tanya Tompkins were both on hand to contribute brilliantly at ...
Chamber
ECLECTIC INSTRUMENTAL COMBINATIONS IN VOM FESTIVAL CONCERT
by Sonia Morse Tubridy
Saturday, July 20, 2019
A Lovely summer afternoon in Sonoma Valley, an excellent small concert hall, enthusiastic audience, exciting musicians and creative programming with interesting story lines. All these were combined July 20 at a Valley of the Moon Festival concert titled “An Italian in Paris.” This is the fifth seaso...
Opera
'ELIXIR' A WELCOME TONIC IN SPRIGHTLY ANNUAL MMF OPERA
by Terry McNeill
Friday, July 19, 2019
In most of the Mendocino Music Festival’s 33 seasons a single evening is given over to a staged opera, with bare bones sets, lighting, costumes, minimal cast and short length. No Wagner or Verdi here, no multiple acts and complicated production demands. Light and frothy are the usual, and so it wa...
Recital
PUNGENT WALTZES AND VIRTUOSITY IN LADEUR'S SLV RECITAL
by Terry McNeill
Wednesday, July 17, 2019
San Francisco based pianist Jeffrey LaDeur has become one of the most sought-after North Bay virtuosi, and cemented that reputation July 17 in a short but eclectic recital in Santa Rosa’s Spring Lake Village Chamber Music Series. Before 140 in the Village’s auditorium Mr. LaDeur began with Schubert...
Choral and Vocal
NOBLE BRAHMS REQUIEM PERFORMANCE CLOSES SONOMA BACH'S SEASON
by Pamela Hicks Gailey
Saturday, June 01, 2019
Sonoma Bach, conducted by Robert Worth, presented a truly grand finale to their 2018-19 "Light Out of Darkness" season in two sold out Schroeder Hall performances June 1 and 2. The program "A Human Requiem" was received rapturously with a well-deserved standing ovation for the main work, Brahms' ...
RECITAL REVIEW
Redwood Empire AGO / Sunday, August 14, 2016
Gregory De Santis, organ

Organist Gregory De Santis

INSPIRING INTERPRETATIONS IN DE SANTIS ORGAN RECITAL

by James Harrod
Sunday, August 14, 2016

Organist Greg de Santis played a delightful and expertly shaped recital of mostly familiar selections August 14 from the classical organ repertory at the First Presbyterian Church in Santa Rosa.

The program opened with Mendelssohn’s C Minor Prelude and Fugue, Opus 37, No 1. The three preludes and fugues of Op. 37, together with Mendelssohn’s Six Sonatas (Op. 65), are foundational in the repertory of all organists. Mr. de Santis performed this work with outstanding pedaling, the right registration, and artistic Mendelssohn phrasing.

Second on the program was Poem, a composition unknown to most listeners, by American composer Charles Shatto (1908 - 1983). The composer was an organist at the Pavilion Organ in Balboa Park, San Diego, and a friend of today’s recitalist. The composition is written in a gentle, contemporary idiom and lovingly played by Mr. De Santis.

Back to the classics, Mr. De Santis played Bach’s great Prelude and Fugue in G Minor, BWV 541, and he did so with confidence and finesse and with perfect Baroque manual touch and pedaling. This is one composition of Bach which makes everyone a “wannabe” organist. It was deftly played and was surely the envy of all organists present in the church!

Next on the program, with no loss of enthusiasm, was a perennial hit: the Minuet Gothique by French Romantic composer Léon Böllmann (1862 - 1897). Last was the Symphony No. 1, Opus 14 (Allegro vivace, Andante, and Finale) by the great French composer Louis Vierne. It was an interpretation that was firstly whimsical, then lushly comforting, and lastly energy infused. The work was played flawlessly and authentically with fiery energy.

Mr. De Santis’ recital was professional to the core in every way.

These August 2016 Summer Organ Recitals are underwritten by the First Presbyterian Church of Santa Rosa and feature local artists of the American Guild of Organists (AGO).