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Chamber
NOVEL OBOE-HARPSICHORD RECITAL FROM AIKEN DUO IN UKIAH
by Terry McNeill
Sunday, February 21, 2021
Oboe and harpsichord recitals are a rare North Bay event, even in a pandemic environment where a formal hall setting isn’t available. So it was a delight Feb. 21 to experience on the Ukiah Symphony’s website a recital by Symphony oboist Beth Aiken and harpsichordist husband Tom. The Aiken home vis...
Symphony
A HEALTHY MIX OF TRANSCRIPTIONS AND ORIGINALS FROM THE SR SYMPHONY
by Steve Osborn
Sunday, January 24, 2021
Transcriptions and ascending arpeggios were the order of the day on Jan. 24, as the Santa Rosa Symphony performed uplifting works by Bach/Webern, Ellen Taaffe Zwilich, Marianna Martínes and Mozart. The concert video was made in Weill Hall on Jan. 9. The first transcription was Webern’s 1935 renderi...
Symphony
HEROIC EFFORT FROM THE SANTA ROSA SYMPHONY
by Steve Osborn
Sunday, December 13, 2020
December 13 was a rainy day, perfect for huddling indoors and watching a prerecorded “live” performance by the Santa Rosa Symphony. The program was expansive, with music from the 18th through 21st centuries, and the mood was festive, in keeping with the holiday season. There was something in the fea...
Symphony
MASKED SANTA ROSA SYMPHONY CARRIES ON BRILLIANTLY
by Steve Osborn
Sunday, November 15, 2020
In some ways the Santa Rosa Symphony’s Nov. 15 concert on YouTube resembled a Conceptual Art performance from the 1970s. On display were about 30 masked orchestral musicians playing six feet apart from each other on stage, some of them separated by plexiglass barriers. In the 1970s, the concept behi...
Chamber
SPLENDID STRINGS IN A SUNLIT GARDEN
by Abby Wasserman
Sunday, November 1, 2020
A sun-drenched autumn afternoon, a Marin County garden and six superb string players from the Santa Rosa Symphony were manna from heaven to a pandemic-weary audience starved for live music. The sextet of Santa Rosa Symphony musicians performed to a small group of 20 Nov. 1, the day after Halloween....
Chamber
EXAMPLARY QUARTET PLAYING IN MARIN GARDEN CONCERT
by Terry McNeill
Thursday, October 22, 2020
Taped video concerts have pretty much dominated the recent fare for classical music fans, but sporadic live music making can still be found in the North Bay with outdoor chamber music. Of course with the obligatory social distancing and often decorative facial masks. Four San Francisco Opera Orc...
Chamber
VIDEO CHAMBER MUSIC FROM LINCOLN CENTER IN GREEN'S BROADCAST
by Terry McNeill
Saturday, October 17, 2020
Along with hosting its resident the Santa Rosa Symphony, Weill Hall has contracted to produce sporadic virtual programs of classical music, and began Oct. 17 with a charming three-part concert from the Chamber Music Society of Lincoln Center in New York. Hosted with comely introductions by CMSLC di...
Symphony
THRILLING SANTA ROSA SYMPHONY PERFORMANCE IN AN EMPTY WEILL HALL
by Steve Osborn
Sunday, October 11, 2020
Viewers of the Santa Rosa Symphony’s inaugural socially distanced YouTube concert on Oct. 11 could be forgiven for thinking they had stumbled upon a performance of Verdi’s “Un Ballo in Maschera” (A Masked Ball), given that the string players in the opening shot all wore black masks. The sole excepti...
Symphony
BROWN VIDEO GALA LAUNCHES SANTA ROSA SYMPHONY SEASON
by Terry McNeill
Saturday, September 12, 2020
Similar to many North Coast musical organizations the Santa Rosa Symphony has scheduled a series of virtual concerts on video, spotlighting sections of the orchestra and the exuberant activities of its conductor Francesco Lecce-Chong. However, as an introduction to the season, a Sept. 12 gala vide...
SONGS AND ECHOES OF HOME IN AIZURI QUARTET CONCERT
by Abby Wasserman
Sunday, March 8, 2020
From the first richly layered harmonies of Dvořák’s Cypresses, the Aizuri Quartet held the March 8th audience at Mt. Tamalpais Methodist Church in thrall. The church was more than half full, a good crowd considering present anxiety about the spread of the coronavirus. Taking precautions, the M...
CHAMBER REVIEW
Chamber Music Society of Lincoln Center / Saturday, October 17, 2020
Orion String Quartet; Timothy Eddy and Mihai Marica, cello; Kenneth Weiss, harpsichord; Thirteen musicians for the Copland Ballet Suite

Weill Hall - Green Music Center

VIDEO CHAMBER MUSIC FROM LINCOLN CENTER IN GREEN'S BROADCAST

by Terry McNeill
Saturday, October 17, 2020

Along with hosting its resident the Santa Rosa Symphony, Weill Hall has contracted to produce sporadic virtual programs of classical music, and began Oct. 17 with a charming three-part concert from the Chamber Music Society of Lincoln Center in New York.

Hosted with comely introductions by CMSLC directors Wu Han and David Finckel, the virtual program on the Green Music Center’s website began with a rarity, Geminiani’s C Major Sonata for Two Cellos and continuo. Underneath the lid of the bright red decorated harpsichord were inscribed the words “To Wake the Soul By Tender Strokes of Art,” and the performance surely had introspection, with cellist Timothy Eddy’s consummate artistry leading in each movement. The lively second movement (Allegro) was reminiscent of Bach’s dances, and the following lament was a highlight of lovely Baroque phrasing. It was originally filmed late in 2014.

Haydn’s F Major Quartet completed the first half in an often-jocular reading by the Orion String Quartet. Every bit of the Op. 50 music, composed in 1787 and filmed in 2017, was a happy journey through Haydn’s virtuosity. The sobriquet “The Dream” has been added to this Quartet, and happiness seemed to prevail throughout. The slow movement (La Réve) was played with a child-like simplicity, and was captivating.

The video format allowed stopping to return to particularly ravishing sections of the Orion’s playing, a listener’s gift alas not available in the usual Weill concert.

Copland’s original version of the Appalachian Spring Ballet Suite closed the program, in the original 1944 version for a 13-musician ensemble. So much was familiar here, and the excellent camera work at the October 2019 filming portrayed each musician in close ups, the concentration palpable. Taking nearly 26 minutes, the subtle variations of the composer’s popular ballet score (and arguably his most popular composition) were deftly performed. Cellist Mr. Finckel joined the ensemble, with outstanding playing from Paul Neubauer (viola), double bassist Anthony Manzo, Ransom Wilson (flute) and clarinetist David Shifrin.

The three video performances from disparate dates proved to be seamless throughout, and the Green will announce additional CMSLC events over the 2020-2021 season.