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Symphony
SOLO BRILLIANCE IN SANTA ROSA SYMPHONY CONCERT
by Terry McNeill
Saturday, February 17, 2024
Opera
OPERA GEMS IN COZY SEBASTOPOL THEATER
by Pamela Hicks Gailey
Friday, February 9, 2024
Choral and Vocal
LUSTROUS VOCAL SOUND AT KUZMA'S SCHROEDER RECITAL
by Pamela Hicks Gailey
Sunday, February 4, 2024
Symphony
HAYDEN'S SAXOPHONE CONCERTO AT SO CO PHIL CONCERT
by Ron Teplitz
Sunday, January 28, 2024
Chamber
SPIRITUAL STRING MUSIC IN BLACK OAK ENSEMBLE'S MARIN CONCERT
by Abby Wasserman
Sunday, January 28, 2024
Chamber
VIRTUOSIC HARP RECITAL AT SPRING LAKE VILLAGE SERIES
by Terry McNeill
Wednesday, January 24, 2024
Chamber
EMOTIONAL BLOCH PIECE HIGHLIGHTS PELED'S RAC RECITAL
by Peter Lert
Sunday, January 21, 2024
Chamber
OYSTER TRIO AT THE ROSE SIGNATURE SERIES
by Terry McNeill
Sunday, January 14, 2024
Chamber
CANTABILE CHARMS IN MIXED 222 GALLERY CONCERT
by Terry McNeill
Saturday, January 13, 2024
Choral and Vocal
A GRAND DIVA'S SHIMMERING AND PROVOCATIVE RECITAL IN WEILL HALL
by Pamela Hicks Gailey
Thursday, January 11, 2024
CHAMBER REVIEW
Spring Lake Village Classical Music Series / Wednesday, September 27, 2023
Lee Trio. Angela Lee, Lisa Lee, Melinda Lee Masur

Lee Trio

LEE TRIO AT SPRING LAKE VILLAGE WITH A RARE ENCORE

by Terry McNeill
Wednesday, September 27, 2023

San Francisco-based Lee Trio has been frequent Sonoma County visitors at Music at Oakmont and at the Spring Lake Village Series, and Sept. 27 they returned to SLV for a concert of very early Beethoven and very late Brahms.

The E-Flat Major Trio, Op. 1, No. 1, was especially well played, only in places sounding Haydnesque in the opening Allegro that had lots of energy with pianist Melinda Lee Masur’s alternating ascending scales with staccato and some short legato phrases. Throughout the piano line was more or a leader than a dominator.

In the gay Scherzo violinist Lisa Lee and cellist Angela Lee played long sustained lines while Ms. Masur’s piano part featured Mozartian phrase ending trills. The leaping piano tenths in the concluding finale introduced two joyous themes and much good musical humor.

There was little surface humor in the Brahms C Minor Trio (Op. 101) that ended the printed program. It’s a dark, dense, late night work from 1886, and right off the Lee mounted a dramatic reading of powerful human emotions. The three-note figure at the outset was starkly played, and this potency continued through the work, apart from the Andante Grazioso’s tender string dialogue with the piano, perhaps with question and answer. Phrases.

The playing in the finale began like the opening Allegro, but became beguiling with the key change to major, and an affirmative statement of warmth in the masterful coda.

In a rare chamber music ensemble choice for the 125 in Montgomery Auditorium, an encore was offered: a trio transcription by cellist Angela Lee of Amy Beach’s lovely “Ah, Love, What a Day!” from the Op. 44 Browning Songs. It was captivatingly performed, laconic and at times intense.

Montgomery’s house piano has long sounded too bright and loud at the top end, exacerbated by the flat hard floor and bare walls. Weill Hall’s expert technician Will Reed prepared the instrument for this one-hour concert, the result being better register balances and richer tone colors.