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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...
CHORAL AND VOCAL REVIEW
River Choir / Sunday, December 19, 2010
International Choral Music with a Festive Twist
Sonia Tubridy, Director

Sona Tubridy (left) and the River Choir Dec. 19

TUBRIDY LEADS RIVER CHOIR IN FESTIVE HOLIDAY GUERNEVILLE CONCERT

by Terry McNeill
Sunday, December 19, 2010

Sonia Tubridy, along with Carol Menke the late Nina Shuman, must be noted as Sonoma County’s most multi-tasking musician. In addition the playing the piano for chamber groups and in shows, singing, playing the accordion and leading Klezmer groups, Ms. Tubridy has found time to lead a first-rate choir of 14, the River Choir.

In the first of two holiday concerts in Guerneville’s Community Church Dec. 19, the Choir presented thirty disparate works ranging from the time of William Byrd to contemporary carols from South Africa and West India. The audience of 35 was invited to participate in several of the carols, and desserts provided by the singers following the concert were an additional holiday treat. The sound of the rain on the Church roof added to the winter flavor of the event.

In addition to providing precise cues as conductor, Ms. Tubridy played orchestral accompaniments at the piano, sang often with the altos and even provided rhythmic support with a drum held under her left arm in the upbeat “Riu Riu Chiu.” Gael Reed and Jean Ashley were soloists in two works each.

Highlights for this reviewer were the intriguing dissonances and surprising modulations in Warlock’s “First Mercy,” “La Virgen Lava Panales” with a shimmering final note from Ms. Ashley, the jazzy syncopations in Luis de Victoria’s “O Magnum Mysterium” and the Shabbat HaMalka festive songs. Randy Barron sang and played the guitar in a long and touching ballade to holiday peace (“Christmas in the Trenches”) reflecting the abortive Christmas truce from 1914 on the Western Front.

Singers listed in the program, including some that read from texts or played guitar (Randy Barron, Dan Fein and Alby Kass) included sopranos Kathleen Dechant and Gael Reed; altos Jean Ashley, Kathrin Williams, Wallie Kass and Tomi VanBladen; tenors Tom Lowrie and Phil Tymon; and basses Bob Bulwa and Green Greenwald.