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Recital
ECLECTIC PIANISM IN SPRING LAKE VILLAGE VIRTUAL RECITAL
by Terry McNeill
Wednesday, May 5, 2021
During the pandemic The Santa Rosa Symphony’s virtual concerts received their due in performance praise, but another series, Spring Lake Village, more quietly presented monthly virtual concerts to a select local audience. May 5 saw the latest event, produced by impresario Robert Hayden, and feature...
Symphony
SONIC CONTRASTS HIGHLIGHT SANTA ROSA SYMPHONY SPRING PROGRAM
by Terry McNeill
Sunday, April 25, 2021
In a curious mixture of compositions, the Santa Rosa Symphony’s penultimate virtual concert of the season April 25 unfolded in ways both highly satisfying and a bit perplexing. Directed by resident Music Director Francesco Lecce-Chong, the event followed a familiar format – several contemporary wor...
Symphony
ZUILL PLAYS ZWILICH WITH SANTA ROSA SYMPHONY
by Steve Osborn
Sunday, March 28, 2021
The Santa Rosa Symphony took a cautious step toward the return of live music in their March 28 virtual concert by sharing the stage with an actual live soloist rather than an apparition. Star cellist Zuill Bailey was still masked, and his back was toward the equally masked and plexiglassed orchestra...
Chamber
ECLECTIC CELLO PIANO VIRTUAL RECITAL FROM TOMKINS ZIVIAN DUO
by Terry McNeill
Sunday, March 28, 2021
The venerable 41-year Redwood Arts Council Series in Occidental has joined the virtual recital world with low budget but artistically satisfying programs, mostly using videos filmed in the performer’s residences. March 28 saw the Tanya Tomkins-Eric Zivian duo present an eclectic program from their ...
Symphony
SANTA ROSA SYMPHONY HITS THE SWEET SPOT
by Steve Osborn
Sunday, February 28, 2021
Small orchestras can inhabit a sweet spot between chamber ensembles and full orchestras, but how well they hit that spot depends on the composer's orchestration and the players' ability to project. That dependence was on full display in the Santa Rosa Symphony's Feb. 28 concert, which featured three...
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....
CHORAL AND VOCAL REVIEW

Antonio Vivaldi (rear) with River Choir and Orchestra Jan. 19

VIVALDI'S GLORIA A DUE IN UNIQUE RIVER CHOIR CONCERT

by Terry McNeill
Sunday, January 19, 2014

In an audacious programming twist, Sonoma County’s River Choir and instrumental colleagues performed Vivaldi’s Gloria (RV 589) Jan. 19 in two versions, distinct but also very much together.

Directed by Sonia Morse Tubridy, the 20 singers and instrumentalists in the dimly lit Guerneville Community Church first performed the popular 30-minute work in the normal fashion, the 12 parts having choruses, solo arias and short string, oboe and baroque trumpet interludes.

Following the performance there was a musical reprise, and the small audience was free to sing any of the four vocal parts using the standard Mason Martens score from 1961. It was verboten to sing with the soloists, and some of the arias that were sung by one voice were augmented by several ambitious chorus members of the same type of voice, during the second time around.

Ms. Tubridy, long associated with innovative programs and commanding a sure grasp of choral performances, led from the piano and vividly described Vivaldi’s music and the Gloria’s relationship to human needs and longings.

Strong orchestral playing came from cellist Wendy Reynolds, oboist Daniel Celidore, trumpeter Tom Hyde, violinists Lisa Doyle and David Hill, and violist Ellen Watson. Though the Church has muddy acoustics, the Domine Fili Unigente and the expansive Cum Sancto Spiritu finale were for me the dramatic highlights.

Choir members in this unique event were Kathy Dechant, Susan Johnson, Liza Loop, Lois Pearlman, Leslie Warren, Jennifer Crenshaw, Wallie Kass, Ruthan Tye, Kathrin Williams, Tom Lowrie, Dan Fein and Alby Kass, and the announced soloists were sopranos Gael Reed and Beth Freeman, and alto Jean Ashley