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Recital
GLITTERING PIANISM IN LI'S OAKMONT RECITAL
by Terry McNeill
Thursday, April 11, 2019
Piano prodigies have always been a fascination for the music public, and the greatest of them (some were Mozart, Mendelssohn, Liszt, Saint Saëns, Hofmann) went on to legendary fame. George Li, who made is local debut at a Music at Oakmont recital April 11, was a remarkable recent keyboard prodigy t...
Symphony
SO CO PHIL'S SEASON CLOSER WITH EXPANSIVE PROKOFIEV 5TH IN JACKSON
by Terry McNeill
Sunday, April 07, 2019
Closing their 20th season with their usual programming aplomb, the Sonoma County Philharmonic played a provocative set of concerts April 6 and 7 in the Jackson Theater, the Orchestra’s new home at the Sonoma Country Day School by the Sonoma County Airport. Local composer Nolan Gasser’s Sonoma Overt...
Choral and Vocal
SISTINE CHAPEL INSPIRATION FOR THE TALLIS SCHOLARS IN WEILL HALL
by Sonia Morse Tubridy
Friday, April 05, 2019
Returning to Weill Hall April 5 after a seven year absence, the ten singers of the Tallis Scholars brought the sacred choral tradition of Palestrina and his contemporaries to an audience of delighted music lovers. Under the direction of Peter Phillips, the 1973 founder of the group, the program was...
Symphony
AUTUMNAL SIBELIUS 7TH HIGHLIGHTS VSO'S SEASON CLOSING CONCERT
by Terry McNeill
Sunday, March 31, 2019
Closing their 87th Season March 30 and 31 the Vallejo Symphony has moved from a single weekend concert to a set of two, and the late March response was two full houses in the charming downtown Vallejo Empress Theater. Conductor Marc Taddei opened the Sunday program with a rousing performance of B...
Recital
SHARED INSTRUMENTAL BEAUTY IN VIEAUX-MEYERS WEILL HALL CONCERT
by Abby Wasserman
Saturday, March 30, 2019
Exciting timbral sound and intricate counterpoint, made possible when two artists with complementary instruments play together, were richly explored by violinist Anne Akiko Meyers and guitarist Jason Vieaux March 30 in Weill Hall. Whether in close harmony, or unison, or weaving separate melodies to...
Chamber
RARE MAHLER QUARTET AT MILL VALLEY CHAMBER CONCERT
by Abby Wasserman
Sunday, March 24, 2019
Piano quartets are relatively rare in the classical literature, and there are only about 40 compositions for the combination of piano, violin, viola and cello, mostly from the Romantic period of the mid to late 1800s. It therefore was special March 24 to hear three great works of this medium, perfor...
Symphony
AMERICAN CLASSICS SPARKLE UNDER KAHANE’S BATON
by Steve Osborn
Saturday, March 16, 2019
Jeffrey Kahane, the Santa Rosa Symphony’s former conductor, returned to the Weill Hall podium on Saturday night, and the results were expectedly wonderful. The concert of American classics was by turns playful (Gershwin’s “An American in Paris”), emotional (Barber’s violin concerto) and triumphant (...
Chamber
FLORESTAN TRIO'S MENDELSSOHN AT SPRING LAKE VILLAGE CONCERT
by Terry McNeill
Friday, March 08, 2019
Spring Lake Village’s monthly concerts usually clock in under an hour, but the March 8 Florestan Trio’s performance was more extended as so much good music was on tap for the 125 residents attending at Santa Rosa’s premiere retirement residence facility. Four short pieces made up the first half, be...
Chamber
TILDEN TRIO'S BOHEMIAN ENERGY AT DOMINICAN CONCERT
by Terry McNeill
Sunday, March 03, 2019
Hard on the heels of the Trio Navarro’s late February concert in Sonoma State’s Schroeder Hall, Northern California’s other premiere resident piano trio, the Tilden, played an equally convincing program March 3 in Dominican University’s Angelico Hall. Clearly each hall’s acoustics, stage pianos and...
Recital
24 SONGS IN A MENKE-THOMPSON RECITAL ODYSSEY
by Terry McNeill
Saturday, February 23, 2019
Sonoma County pop and country singing enjoys continued popularity but it rare to see a professional classical vocal concert announced. Diva Ruth Ann Swenson was once a local star, but she has long departed and not much virtuoso recital singing can be found in the North Bay. But the exception to th...
SYMPHONY REVIEW
Marin Symphony / Sunday, November 02, 2008
Alasdair Neale

Alasdair Neale

PIANIST WEISS CAPTIVATES MARIN SYMPHONY AUDIENCE

by
Thursday, November 06, 2008

The Marin Symphony’s second concert of the 2008-09 concert season welcomed the return of the American pianist Orion Weiss, who previously performed Rachmaninoff’s Third Piano Concerto with the symphony during the 2007 season. The youthful Weiss once again demonstrated his artistic maturity with Beethoven’s sublime Fourth Piano Concerto, Op. 58. Weiss’s sensitive phrasing and impeccable technique communicated to the very back rows of the Marin Civic Center auditorium, captivating the large audience. The conventional Beethoven cadenzas were selected, forsaking the later ones by Reinecke and Busoni. Weiss was rewarded with a well-earned standing ovation.

Of the five piano concertos Beethoven composed, the fourth is the composer’s first to completely break away from the eighteenth century’s classical style. The second movement (Andante Con Moto) is a moving discourse between soloist and orchestra underscoring the Bonn master’s formidable poetic expression. In this performance, the dialogue between the solo instrument and the symphony was elegant, deftly led by conductor Alasdair Neale. Weiss chose to use a rare instrument for the concerto, a Henry F. Miller concert grand recently rebuilt by the local JB Piano firm, rather than the standard house Steinway. The circa 1899 piano had a treble with long sustain and a growling bass.

While the Beethoven Concerto was the main event for the evening, the orchestra’s performances of excerpts from Mendelssohn’s “A Midsummer Night’s Dream” and Mozart’s Symphony No. 36 in C Major, K. 425 (“Linz”), were also memorable. The juxtaposition of the romantic Mendelssohn work with the classical Mozart symphony was engaging. Both were played with rhythmic flexibility and diffuse colors. Special mention should be made of the solos of Principal French Horn Alex Camphouse and Principal Flutist Monica Daniel-Barker in the Mendelssohn.