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A real "smorgasbord" of music!

Musicale - July 15, 2021 - Recorded performances

Twelve of us came together to enjoy each other's performances.

Utako started us off with three pieces, two by Paderewski and one by Chopin. Padarewski's Op. 10, No. 1 Au Soir is a wonderfully lyrical piece that finishes too quickly - it leaves the listener wanting to hear more. His Sarabande Op 14, No 2 evokes a "middle ages" feel to it and would fit well within Respighi's "Middle Ages Suite" if ever that was to be considered. Chopin's Etude Op 25 No. 1 (Aeolian Harp) is a standard repertoire piece that many amateur pianists have as a goal to learn (myself included). Utako played all three pieces beautifully.

Judy continued our concert with Chopin's Prelude No. 17, a deceptively simple sounding piece which is considered a type of "etude' since the melody is hidden within the chords. A nice performance by Judy. Next came her interpretation of Schubert's Andante from his Sonata Op. 1 No. 20. A sweet melancholy piece that could have been adapted as a song by Schubert. Beautifully performed!

Next came Sam and Judy Smith's performance of Gershwin's "Promenade (Walking the Dog)" for clarinet and piano. A fun sounding piece with whimsical imagined visions of the "doggie" being walked around - not a big dog but a small to pocket-sized doggie. Nicely performed with the clarinet miked really well. Great performance!

We then listened to Ed's composition of "High Steppin'", created with synthesizer, drums and computer. He added visuals to the piece of himself running at marathons and events. Ed ran his first marathon after two thousand miles of training. More marathons followed including the Atlanta Marathons and Peachtree races. The piece is an upbeat composition and fun to listen to. Per Ed: " I composed, performed, edited, and recorded this musical piece using synthesizers, digital drum machine, and computer sequencing software. The photos represent just a few of the numerous races I competed in over the years 1979-2017 while living in Georgia."

Gail continued the Musicale with her "practice" performance of Haydn's Sonata HOB XVI 52, No. 62 in E flat. Gail was inspired to study this Sonata for a solo performance. She managed very well with the first few pages of her study. A grand composition with a symphonic feel and "fun personality" that sounds wonderful on Gail's Bosendorfer. Good balance and dynamics throughout. Gail is well on her way to perfecting this solo piece that she had just started practicing a month ago. We look forward to her full performance one day.

Carol performed "Bagatellamation", a short Bagatelle that incorporates hand-drawn animation - a "silly piece" according to Carol. Both Carol and Richard animated the piece in 1988 and Carol matched the Trepnin composition (Bagatelle) to the animation. It's fun to listen to and watch especially for young students.

We're all looking forward to our in-person Musicale scheduled for Thursday, July 24 at PianoWorks, Duluth.

Tom Slavicek

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1 Comment

Gail Ravin Starr
Gail Ravin Starr
Jul 15, 2021

Thank you for the beautiful summary, Tom!

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