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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....
CHAMBER REVIEW
Chamber Music Society of Lincoln Center / Saturday, October 17, 2020
Orion String Quartet; Timothy Eddy and Mihai Marica, cello; Kenneth Weiss, harpsichord; Thirteen musicians for the Copland Ballet Suite

David Finckel and Wu Han

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 directors Wu Han and David Finckel, the virtual program on the Green Music Center’s website began with a rarity, Geminiani’s C Major Sonata for Two Cellos and continuo. Underneath the lid of the bright red decorated harpsichord were inscribed the words “To Wake the Soul By Tender Strokes of Art,” and the performance surely had introspection, with cellist Timothy Eddy’s consummate artistry leading in each movement. The lively second movement (Allegro) was reminiscent of Bach’s dances, and the following lament was a highlight of lovely Baroque phrasing. It was originally filmed late in 2014.

Haydn’s F Major Quartet completed the first half in an often-jocular reading by the Orion String Quartet. Every bit of the Op. 50 music, composed in 1787 and filmed in 2017, was a happy journey through Haydn’s virtuosity. The sobriquet “The Dream” has been added to this Quartet, and happiness seemed to prevail throughout. The slow movement (La Réve) was played with a child-like simplicity, and was captivating.

The video format allowed stopping to return to particularly ravishing sections of the Orion’s playing, a listener’s gift alas not available in the usual Weill concert.

Copland’s original version of the Appalachian Spring Ballet Suite closed the program, in the original 1944 version for a 13-musician ensemble. So much was familiar here, and the excellent camera work at the October 2019 filming portrayed each musician in close ups, the concentration palpable. Taking nearly 26 minutes, the subtle variations of the composer’s popular ballet score (and arguably his most popular composition) were deftly performed. Cellist Mr. Finckel joined the ensemble, with outstanding playing from Paul Neubauer (viola), double bassist Anthony Manzo, Ransom Wilson (flute) and clarinetist David Shifrin.

The three video performances from disparate dates proved to be seamless throughout, and the Green will announce additional CMSLC events over the 2020-2021 season.