Home  Reviews  Articles  Calendar  Presenters  Add Event     
Wednesday, May 23, 2018
Reader Comments 0 new this week
We value your participation. Contribute by leaving a comment in the box following articles and reviews.
 Recent Reviews
SYMPHONY
FERRANDIS BIDS ADIEU WITH MAHLERíS FINAL SYMPHONY
by Steve Osborn
Sunday, May 06, 2018
Sonoma State students in graduation robes posed for pictures and hugged each other at the universityís stone gates on Sunday afternoon, mirroring the prolonged farewells within the universityís Green Music Center, where Bruno Ferrandis bid adieu to the Santa Rosa Symphony after a dozen years at the ...
SYMPHONY
SONIC SPLENDOR AT MARIN SYMPHONY SEASON FINALE
by Abby Wasserman
Tuesday, May 01, 2018
The Marin Symphony Orchestra ended the current season with a flourish, interpreting big and small works by Richard Strauss and Stravinsky. Strauss and Stravinsky were contemporaries for 40 years, but inhabited different worlds. Both composers were affected by cataclysmic changes and war, and musical...
SYMPHONY
ORGAN SYMPHONY IN SSU ORCHESTRA CONCERT IN WEILL
by Terry McNeill
Sunday, April 29, 2018
Though Classical Sonoma seldom reviews student concerts, as ample North Coast concerts keep the staff of 11 reviewers busy. But the chance to hear the Sonoma State University Orchestra tackle St. SaŽnsí majestic Organ Symphony April 29 was a rare opportunity and not easily to be missed. Avec lí...
RECITAL
HEAVENLY SCHUBERT AND DEMONIC CHOPIN
by Terry McNeill
Saturday, April 21, 2018
One of the anomalies in the long ago ďGolden EraĒ of romantic pianism (about 1905 to 1940) is that the virtuoso giants of the time didnít play Schubert. It took the German pianist Artur Schnabel to bring the beauties of Schuberís work to the publicís attention, and now they seem to be on almost ever...
SYMPHONY
SPLENDID JUPITER AND ZOOMING CONCERTO AT VALLEJO SYMPHONY SEASON FINALE
by Terry McNeill
Sunday, April 15, 2018
Over the past two years the Vallejo Symphony has made big changes, moving from a stark middle school auditorium to the snazzy remodeled 1911-era downtown Empress Theater, and engaging Marc Taddei as its seventh conductor. April 15 was the seasonís final concert of the 86th season. In a programmin...
CHAMBER
VIRTUOSO CELLO AND GUITAR TRANSCRIPTIONS AT RAC SEBASTOPOL CONCERT
by Terry McNeill
Saturday, April 14, 2018
Listeners and yes even music critics usually prepare for a concert with research, checking recorded performances, looking at artist biographies and even reviewing sheet music. This was a difficult task for the April 14 Redwood Arts Council concert in Sebastopolís Community Church, as the performers...
CHAMBER
TRIO NAVARRO'S POPULAR FARE IN SCHROEDER HALL CONCERT
by Terry McNeill
Sunday, April 08, 2018
Long time Classical Sonoma readers may recall many Trio Navarro concert reviews that lauded their virtuosity and interest in rarely played repertoire. The April 8 concert in Schroeder Hall before 85 chamber music fans featured sterling performances but had a mostly conservative menu of popular trio...
RECITAL
KENNER'S ALL POLISH RECITAL HAS PADEREWSKI RARITY
by Abby Wasserman
Sunday, April 08, 2018
Kevin Kennerís April 8 recital at Dominican Universityís Angelico Hall had been advertised as all-Chopin, but he added a detour into another seminal Polish composer-pianist, Paderewski. Several of Mr. Kennerís teachers were Poles, he speaks Polish, and he navigated at the piano both composersí deman...
SYMPHONY
IT'S ALL ABOUT THE VOICE AT SANTA ROSA SYMPHONY
by Steve Osborn
Sunday, April 08, 2018
In an April 8 Santa Rosa Symphony concert filled to the brim with instruments--electric violin, vibraphone, marimba, xylophone, glockenspiel, keyboard samplers, harps, piano and myriad drums, gongs and bells, to say nothing of winds, brass and strings--the instrument that came out on top was the hum...
CHAMBER
VOM FESTIVAL TRIO CHARMS WITH CHAMBER MIX, AND HUMMEL
by Terry McNeill
Saturday, March 31, 2018
At the core of the group of Valley of the Moon Music Festival (VOM) musicians is an ensemble of trios and duos, and as a trio March 31 Festival founders cellist Tanya Tomkins and pianist Eric Zivian joined British violinist Monica Huggett for a chamber music concert in the Green Music Centerís Schro...
Local Concerts  
CHAMBER REVIEW
Valley of the Moon Music Festival / Saturday, May 12, 2018
Tanya Tomkins, cello; Eric Zivian, piano; Kyle Stegall, tenor; Joseph Maile, violin

Pianist Erick Zivian and Tenor Kyle Stegall (John Hefti Photo)

FINAL VOM MUSICIANS CONCERT IN SCHROEDER A SCHUBERT DELIGHT

by Terry McNeill
Saturday, May 12, 2018

It's rare to have the opportunity to compare in a short period two performances of the same major Schubert work, in this case the great B Flat Piano Trio, D. 898. The chance came May 12 when the Valley of the Moon Festival musicians played it in Schroeder, just over a month since the Hallís resident Navarro Trio gave a compelling reading of the work from 1827.

Surprisingly, the differences were greater than the similarities. The estimable Navarro uses a modern concert grand and the violin and cello are fitted with steel strings. The VOM trio uses a piano from Mendelssohnís era, and the bowed instruments have gut or synthetic strings. Many feel these types of strings have a dark and richer sound than steel-core strings, but there is seldom a consensus from listeners. Also there are seasoned music lovers that are not enamored of the period piano sound.

Violinist Joseph Maile took the place of the frequently performing VOM violinist Monica Huggett, and with pianist Erick Zivian and cellist Tanya Tomkins the Op. 99 work unfolded with Schubertian exuberance and brisk tempos. From the usual criticís seat way back in Schroeder the cello and piano lacked projection and distinct instrumental lines, and no treble partials could be heard from the piano. So different from the Hallís modern pianos. Iíll sit closer next time music is played with a small ensemble of period instruments, and presumably hear more.

A highlight of the performance came in the andante un pocco mossowhere the majestic theme first stated by Ms. Tomkins was heartfelt and spiritual, and her duos with Mr. Maile were splendid, with delicacy foremost. The scherzo received a reading more intimate than experienced in most Schubert scherzos, and the finale rondo allegro underscored fetching folk-song melodies.

Tenor Kyle Stegall and Mr. Zivian performed an extended group of Schubert songs, with a short Schumann piece, that constituted the entire first half. Mr. Stegall has sung at the VOM summer festivals and has a penetrating, elastic and clear tenor but at this recital lacked the round warm sound of iconic German lieder tenors. The opening Geheimes (D. 719) was perfection, with deft swelling on individual notes, and morphed into the furious tempo of Versunken, D. 715. The singer had the score but infrequently glanced at it, preferring to animate each song with varied facial expression and change in tone color. The postlude to a low piano note in Versunken was lovely.

These songs were written on Goetheís poetry, and are less familiar than the popular Die Winterreise and Die SchŲne MŁllerin cycles. But sonic and dramatic contrasts were everywhere present in this masterful recital, from the slow and hesitant Erster Verlust (D. 226) and the stentorian Freudvall und Liedvoll, D. 201, to the chaste Nahe des Geliebten (D. 162) with different but mesmerizing repeats and phrases sung at half voice.

In the next section the performance of An Schwager Kronos (D. 369, and a Fischer-Dieskau specialty) was echt Schubert singing, and Liebhaber in allen Gestalten (D. 588) had more sonority than any song before, with refined rubato playing from Mr. Zivian.

Of course the performance of the famous ErlkŲnig (D. 328) generated excitement for the audience of 100, as the drama mounted in each of the eight stanzas and Mr. Zivianís fast repeated chords hammered out perfect support for the tragic story of the fleeing child dying in his fatherís arms. Mr. Stegall looked furtively around the stage during the increasing vocal histrionics, giving vocal emphasis (shrill at moments) to the storyís interplay of speeding horse, two riders and approaching lethal menace.

No encore was offered.

Events Calendar

RECITAL
Sky Hill Cultural Alliance
Friday, May 25, 2018
7:30 PM - Petaluma
Jura Margulis, piano
Tchaikovsky: Dumka, Op. 59; Scarlatti: Sonatas in F Minor, E Major (2), D Minor (2) and D Major; Rachmaninoff: Preludes: Op. 23, No. 4 (D Major) and 23, No. 5 (G Minor), Op. 32, No. 10 (B Minor) and...
Details

SYMPHONY
Sonoma County Philharmonic
Friday, June 15, 2018
7:30 PM - Santa Rosa
Norman Gamboa, conductor. Hans Brightbill, cello
Julio Fonseca: Overture to Ruinas de UjarrŠs; Elgar: Cello Concerto in E Minor. Op. 85; Frank La Rocca: Crossing the Rubicon; Gershwin: Porgy & Bess (Symphonic Picture) Bon Voyage Concert (2018 Tour...
Details

CHAMBER
Echo Chamber Orchestra
Sunday, June 17, 2018
7:30 PM - San Anselmo
Daniel Canosa, conductor. Anna Maria Mendieta, harp
ďNostalgia.Ē Dvorak: Czech Suite in D Major; Kevin Gordon: The Long Way, by Kevin Gordon; Piazzolla: Tango Suite for Harp and Orchestra info@echorchestra TICKETS: Preferred seating $35, General seati...
Details

CHORAL AND VOCAL
Cantiamo Sonoma
Sunday, June 17, 2018
5:30 PM - Santa Rosa
Carol Menke,conductor
Choral Evensong: music by William Byrd, John Sanders, and Eriks Esenvalds No admission charge, free will donation....
Details

CHORAL AND VOCAL
Mastercard Performance Series
Wednesday, June 27, 2018
7:30 PM - Rohnert Park
Mormon Tabernacle Choir and Orchestra, at Temple Square.
Ryan Murphy, and Mack Wilberg, conducto
Program TBA Gates open at 5:30. Indoor tickets: $45-80; Outdoor Table: $40; Outdoor Lawn: $25; Outdoor Kid's tickets: $12.50...
Details

CHAMBER
Mendocino Music Festival
Saturday, July 07, 2018
2:00 PM - Mendocino
Stephen Prutsman, piano; Livia Sohn and Geoff Nuttall, violin
Franck: Sonata in A Major; Telemann: Gulliver Suite; Hubay: Carmen Fantasie; transcriptions of opera arias by Bizet, Verdi and Gluck...
Details

SYMPHONY
Mendocino Music Festival
Sunday, July 08, 2018
6:00 PM - Mendocino
Festival Orchestra, Alan Pollack, conductor. Livia Sohn, violin; Shawnette Sulker, soprano
Bernstein: Oversture to the Opera Candide, and songs and dances from "West Side Story"; Copland: Suite from the Ballet Appalachian Spring; Barber: Violin Concerto...
Details

CHAMBER
Mendocino Music Festival
Tuesday, July 10, 2018
4:00 PM - Mendocino
Calder Quartet. Benjamin Jacobson and Andrew Bulbrook, violin; Jonathan Moerschel, viola; Eric Byer
Webern: Five Movements for String Quartet, Op. 5; Beethoven: String Quartets, Op. 135 and 74 ("Harp")...
Details

CHAMBER
Mendocino Music Festival
Wednesday, July 11, 2018
2:30 PM - Mendocino
New Esterhazy Quartet. Kati Kyme and Lisa Weiss, violin; Anthony Martin, viola; William Skeen, cell
Haydn: Quartets in D Minor, C Major, D Major and B-flat major...
Details

OPERA
Mendocino Music Festival
Friday, July 13, 2018
7:30 PM - Mendocino
Festival Orchestra, LuÁik Aprahšmian, conductor. Singers include Angela Cadolago, Tonia D'Amelia, S
Cimarosa: Opera - Il Matrimonio Segreto. ...
Details