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Recital
MTA BENEFIT CONCERT FEATURES FAURE, DVORAK, JANACEK AND BARBER WORKS
by Terry McNeill
Sunday, November 11, 2018
In a splendid concert Nov. 11 the Music Teachers Association of California, Sonoma County Chapter, presented their sixth annual benefit concert before 40 avid listeners in the Santa Rosa home of Helen Howard and Robert Yeats. Highlights of the performances, involving eight musicians in various perf...
Recital
SERKIN'S SINGULAR MOZART AND BACH PLAYING IN WEILL RECITAL
by Terry McNeill
Friday, November 09, 2018
Returning to Weill Hall following a fire-related recital cancellation in 2017, pianist Peter Serkin programmed just three works in his Nov. 7 concert, three masterworks that challenged both artist and audience alike. It needs to be said at the outset that Mr. Serkin takes a decidedly non-standard a...
Chamber
LUMINOUS FAURE TOPS LINCOLN TRIO'S SPRING LAKE VILLAGE CONCERT
by Terry McNeill
Wednesday, November 07, 2018
Familiarity in chamber music often evokes warm appreciation, and it was thus Nov. 7 when the Chicago-based Lincoln Piano Trio made one of their many Sonoma County appearances, this time on the Spring Lake Village Classical Music Series. Regularly presented by local impresario Robert Hayden, the Lin...
Symphony
PEACE AND LOVE FROM THE SANTA ROSA SYMPHONY
by Steve Osborn
Sunday, November 04, 2018
Before the Santa Rosa Symphony’s Nov. 4 performance of Leonard Bernstein’s “Symphonic Dances from West Side Story,” Symphony CEO Alan Silow took a moment to acknowledge the victims of the Pittsburgh synagogue attack and to observe that music offers a more peaceful and loving view of the world. Mr. ...
Chamber
ATOS TRIO IN MILL VALLEY CHAMBER CONCERT
by Abby Wasserman
Sunday, November 04, 2018
When the ATOS Piano Trio planned their all-Russian touring program at their Berlin home base, it had a strong elegiac, even tragic theme that surely resonated with their Mill Valley Chamber Music Society audience Nov. 4 in Mill Valley. Comprised of Annette von Hehn, violin; Thomas Hoppe, piano; and...
Chamber
ATOS TRIO IN OCCIDENTAL CHAMBER CONCERT
by Terry McNeill
Saturday, November 03, 2018
When the Berlin-based ATOS Piano Trio entered the cramped Occidental Performing Arts stage Nov. 3, the audience of 100 anticipated familiar works in the announced all-Russian program. What they got was a selection of rarely-plays trios, with a gamut of emotions. Then one-movement Rachmaninoff G Mi...
Symphony
MIGHTY SHOSTAKOVICH 10TH OPENS MARIN SYMPHONY SEASON
by Terry McNeill
Sunday, October 28, 2018
Just two works were on the opening program of the Marin Symphony’s 67th season Oct. 28, Tchaikovsky’s iconic D Major Violin Concerto, and Shostakovich’s Tenth Symphony. Before a full house in the Marin Center Auditorium conductor Alasdair Neale set a judicious opening tempo in the brief orchestra i...
Symphony
VIVALDI FOR ALL SEASONS IN WEILL BAROQUE CONCERT
by Sonia Morse Tubridy
Saturday, October 27, 2018
The Venice Baroque Orchestra, a dozen superb musicians that include strings, harpsichord and recorder, played an uplifting concert Oct. 27 of mostly Vivaldi sinfonias and concertos. The Weill Hall audience of 600 had rapt attention throughout, and the playing was of the highest musical level. This r...
Recital
LIN'S PIANISM AND PERSONA CHARM SCHROEDER HALL AUDIENCE
by Terry McNeill
Sunday, October 21, 2018
In somewhat of a surprise a sold out Schroeder Hall audience greeted pianist Steven Lin Oct. 21 in his local debut recital. Why a surprise? Because Mr. Lin was pretty much unknown in Northern California, and Schroeder is rarely, very rarely sold out for a single instrumentalist. But no matter, and...
Chamber
HEROIC TRUMPET AND ORGAN MUSIC AT INCARNATION
by Jerry Dibble
Friday, October 12, 2018
The strong connections between Santa Rosa’s musical community and California State University Chico were on display Oct. 12 as David Rothe, Professor Emeritus in the Chico Music Department, and Ayako Nakamura, trumpet with the North State Symphony, presented a concert titled “Heroic Music for Trumpe...
RECITAL REVIEW
Sebastopol Center For The Arts / Saturday, February 19, 2011
Antonio Iturrioz, piano

Pianist Antonio Iturrioz

GODOWSKY TRANSCRIPTIONS HIGHLIGHT SEBASTOPOL ARTS CENTER RECITAL

by Richard Wayland
Saturday, February 19, 2011

Guerneville pianist Antonio Iturrioz exhibited masterful playing Feb. 19 in a Sebastopol Center for the Arts recital. The venue with 100 in attendance was small, as was the marginal piano, but Mr. Iturrioz’ control of phrasing and attention to detail was formidable.

He began melodiously with a Schumann Romance, OP. 28, No. 2, making it sound so simple, and then performed the Godowsky arrangement of Schumann’s “A Flower to Me Thou Seemest.” It was clearly more Schumann than Godowsky.

Chopin’s Etude in A Flat, Op. 25, No. 1 (Aeolian Harp) was shimmering and sparkling, everything smooth. It was the best live performance of the work that I have heard since 1954 when I got my hand slapped for turning the page a bit early for the performer who was my teacher. Liszt’s popular Consolation No. 3was a good demonstration the Liszt was not all splash and show. It was presented as a mellow, melodic and dreamy inspirational work.

The last piece before the intermission was “Symphonic Metamorphoses on the Artist’s Life Waltzes” of Johann Strauss, arranged by Godowsky, and a test of pianistic prowess. It is exceptionally difficult, and few many pianists attempt it, but it is a staple of Mr. Iturrioz’s repertoire, and he keeps its musicality without meretricious display.

Regarding the performance of Liszt's 2nd Legend (St. Francis Walking on the Waves) one could paraphrase the putative comments in the movie "Amadeus" where Emperor Nicholas II says there were too many notes. Here for Mr. Iturrioz there were many but not too many, and the pianist made the most of them, His range of expression from rippling brook sounds to the roar of torrential cascades was breath taking.

Scriabin’s Nocturne for the Left Hand, Op. 9, was so well done that it was difficult to realize that I was listening to a single hand doing all that work.

The program’s next work, the Schumann Kinderszenen (Op. 15) is also demanding for the performer, but in a far different way than other works on the program. It is not a virtuosic show piece but 13small sections require quick changes in mood in style, and Mr. Iturrioz did each elegantly.

The final item on the program was A Flat Polonaise Fantasie, Op. 61, of Chopin. The work was Chopin’s last large scale work for the piano, composed in 1846, and must have been raised a few eyebrows when introduced. Mr. Iturrioz’ performance made it clear that Chopin was, as Liszt said, taking music in a new direction.

Two encores were offered, Lecuona’s “Noche Azul” and Gottschalk's El Cocole.