A Penchant for the Moderns: Pianist Gabriela Martinez in Concert

As though serving as a foil for the oft-percussive, even “symphonic” sonority of several of her chosen compositions, pianist Gabriela Martinez concluded her Sunday, April 15 recital at Le Petit Trianon Theatre for the Steinway Society the Bay Area with the sweet, salon Romance in E-flat Major, Op. 44, No. 1 by Anton Rubinstein. Some of us elder auditors could recall that Frank Sinatra sang the melody version of the piece as “If You are but a Dream.” Ms. Martinez, however, seemed less concerned with performing “standard” repertory as much as inviting us to hear both old and new wine in new bottles. She opened with the Seven Bagatelles, Op. 33 of Beethoven, his so-called Kleinigkeiten, of 1802-03. Read full story

Archived in these categories: 20th Century, 21st Century, Piano, Romantic Era

Organ Concert at St. Dunstan’s


On Sunday, April 15, 2018, St. Dunstan’s Episcocal Church in Carmel Valley presented the second of its 2018 Organ Concert Series. As mentioned before, the new pipe organ built by Dobson Pipe Organ Builders in Iowa, was designed for this small sanctuary only three years ago. The Church and its Rector Rob Fisher are eager to have concerts regularly so that audiences can hear this beautiful instrument.

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Archived in these categories: 20th Century, Baroque, Organ

MPC String Ensemble with Organ Soloist Tiffany Bedner at the Carmel Mission

Organist Tiffany Bedner
So often I feel incredibly fortunate to live on the Monterey Peninsula. Not only for its physical beauty, but also for its creative and artistic energy. On Friday night  I attended the MPC String Ensemble concert conducted by David Dally at the Carmel Mission Basilica, and not surprisingly, the Carmel Mission’s beautiful ambiance significantly enhanced the music we were hearing. The program began with an organ and string setting of Bach’s famous D minor Toccata and Fugue, BWV 565. I had never heard it before in its arrangement for strings and organ, and this performance turned out to be powerful and compelling. The featured organist was Tiffany Bedner, the regular organist at the Mission. Her playing was clean and elegant, with the strings complimenting her sound. Together they gave us a very satisfying performance of this great work.

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Archived in these categories: 20th Century, Chamber music, Monterey Peninsula College, Orchestral, Organ

Camerata Singers — Beatitude Mass (for the Homeless)

Camerata’s program on Sunday afternoon, March 4, at First Presbyterian Church, Monterey, was a special one indeed. The idea behind the program was to give a program for benefit of outreach in Monterey County. Unlike presentations of this caliber, admission was free – with donations encouraged but not required. John Koza, Artistic Director and Conductor, conceived a program of music complementing the main work – Henry Mollicone’s Beatitude Mass (for the Homeless). The first half included works by a number of the usual top choral arrangers. Ed Lojeski’s arrangement of  Amazing Grace began with a clear, clean vocal line almost in the traditional vein before morphing into a jazzier feel. Bring me little water, Sylvie as arranged by Kirby Shaw featured Liz Baseman as soloist. This is definitely a cool work. St. Francis’ Lord, make me an instrument took on new meaning as composed by M. Roger Holland. Holland is known for Gospel arrangements and this one definitely hit the mark. The final “instrument of peace” fairly floated. Read full story

Archived in these categories: 20th Century, Choral

Palpable Intimacies: The Atos Trio in Recital

Some concerts require no encore: the Atos Trio performed music of Turina, Mendelssohn, and Schubert for the Steinway Society, Sunday, March 4 at the Petit Trianon Theatre. Before a small but decidedly enraptured audience, the Trio – celebrating its 15th year of collaboration – displayed a consistent level of ensemble and spontaneous, insightful musicianship as to elevate them to the upper echelons of chamber music performers. Read full story

Archived in these categories: 20th Century, Chamber music, Piano, Piano trio, Romantic Era