2013—2014 Season Description
PLEASE NOTE NEW TIMES! Doors open at 1:30 p.m. Curtain 2:00 p.m.
Dates, artists and repertoire subject to change
is a young, Los Angeles based group of flute, oboe, clarinet, French horn and bassoon. They perform standard wind quintet repertoire, but they are also committed to promoting and performing the music of new composers. They have premiered many new works, and have recorded their first album including compositions with Latin influence. www.quintessentialwinds.net
REVIEW OF QUINTESSENTIAL WINDS, OCT. 21
Quintessential Winds recently opened our 2013-14 season with a delightful and varied concert. This young quintet is comprised of accomplished musicians and performers, adept at many different styles and comfortable relating to an audience.
They are fortunate to have an exceptionally talented arranger in their group, horn player Adrian Dunker, so their repertoire is not limited to the traditional pieces originally composed for their configuration. At our concert, they played music by Beethoven, Mozart, Debussy, Dvořák, Barber and Bartok, as well as more contemporary works by Valerie Coleman, Paquito D’Rivera, and John Williams. This satisfied everyone in our audience, from those who expected a “real” concert to those who simply wanted an afternoon of entertainment.
The pieces were beautifully performed, and cannily selected for their appeal. As an example, they performed Dvořák’s beloved “American” Quartet No. 12, originally for strings. It is such a tuneful, colorful, “dancy” piece that even someone who never heard of Dvořák would enjoy it. And I will argue that Dunker’s brilliant arrangement was an improvement on the original – more idiomatic and “American” sounding. It was a joy to hear!
Other highlights of the program were:
- Their opening number, Umoja by Valerie Coleman – first because they entered the stage from all over the auditorium as they performed it, always an arresting way to start a concert; and second because they exposed us to wonderful music by a living woman composer!
- A surprisingly rich performance of Mozart’s Overture to The Marriage of Figaro, capturing the flavor of the entire orchestra with just their five instruments.
- Samuel Barber’s gorgeous piece Summer Music, introduced with just enough commentary to invite us all into this modern piece. In fact, their commentary throughout was enlightening, humorous and to the point – just the right balance of music and talk.
- Their encore was a crowd-pleasing Come Together from the Beatles’ vast catalog. Several people asked me “what was that last piece?” and were surprised by the answer!
Our audience left happy, and the HCCA Board felt that our new season was off to a great start!
Diane Mitchell, Artistic Director
Since joining forces as a professional duo in 2009, internationally acclaimed solo pianists Eva-Maria Zimmermann and Keisuke Nakagoshi have electrified audiences from Carnegie Hall to Osaka, Japan with their dazzling artistry and outside-the-box thematic programming for piano-four-hands. Their first recording, Mind Meld, was nominated in 2013 for two Grammy awards. www.zofoduet.com
ZOFO TAKES AUDIENCE TO OUTER SPACE AND BACK
The dynamic young piano 4-hands team, ZOFO, performed for HCCA on Sunday Jan. 26th, and they were phenomenal! Anyone who loves music would have enjoyed this exciting concert of music from the 20th and 21st centuries. (ZOFO is Swiss pianist Eva-Maria Zimmerman and Japanese pianist Keisuke Nakagoshi, although both are based in San Francisco these days.)
On paper their program may have looked rather daunting and foreign – even the Gershwin piece, Cuban Overture, was probably unfamiliar to most in the audience. But it was a brilliant opener, played with rhythmic verve and warmth, a delightful souvenir of Gershwin’s 2-week Cuban vacation in 1932. In complete contrast, the following Six Epigraphes Antiques (Six Ancient Inscriptions) by Claude Debussy couldn’t have been more different – ZOFO’s subtle, transparent, evocative and delicate performance was spellbinding. John Corigliano’s Gazebo Dances ended the first half with a light and humorous mood, in a spontaneous and energetic interpretation by the duo.
After intermission, we all experienced a trip to The Milky Way, via Estonian composer Urmas Sisask’s piece of the same name. This intrigued the audience with “inside the piano” playing techniques, in which the pianists took their hands directly to the strings, striking, strumming and plucking to achieve other-worldly sounds. The concert ended with the US Premiere of the 2009 Sonata for Piano 4-Hands by Australian composer Carl Vine. This unusual, complex and beautiful music was performed with thrilling virtuosity by ZOFO.
Throughout the concert, both pianists offered brief, and welcome, comments about the music, but their easy and confident presentation let the music speak for itself. This concert was another example of music at its best – fascinating compositions performed with passion and personality by virtuoso musicians.
With moments of wonder, laughter, gorgeous beauty and vibrant rhythms, ZOFO took all of us to musical landscapes we never even dreamed of! To those who missed this musical trip, rest assured that ZOFO will return to Hemet soon.
The Merling Trio
is a truly international trio, bringing together musicians from Polish, Japanese, and Dutch backgrounds, on violin, cello and piano. Recognized as one of today’s premier ensembles, the trio has been hailed as a brilliantly distinguished group endowed with remarkable gifts of communication, magnificent precision, and an impeccable blend of sound. www.merlingtrio.com
ARIOSO DUO Flutist Cynthia Ellis and harpist Michelle Temple formed their duo in 2005 out of a shared passion to explore the vibrant and colorful repertory for this beloved instrumental combination. They will perform a program specially designed to celebrate the beauty and joy of Spring. www.cindyellisflute.com
Peter Sprague String Consort
Led by the renowned guitarist and composer, this traditional string quartet mixed with jazz combo played an innovative program in April of 2012 for our Scholarship Fundraiser. They were so very well received that we have invited them to return for our season closing concert. www.petersprague.com
All concerts held at First Southern Baptist Church, 433 S. San Jacinto St., Hemet, 92543
For more information, call 951-658-7319 or email email@example.com