Ensemble Monterey — The King Shall Rejoice

Director John Anderson

The Season Finale of Ensemble Monterey was a wonderful collection of regal music. The title for this concert is taken from the last piece offered: Handel’s Coronation Anthem. Included in the program material was a graphic featuring “The Fab Five.” This refers to 5 composers who wrote mostly in the 18thCentury with one work from the 17thCentury. I attended the Saturday evening concert on April 27, 2019 at the First Presbyterian Church in Monterey, CA. The day was a lovely Spring day, so the room grew warm as the evening progressed. Still, I thank the church for opening their doors and sharing the good acoustics of their space.

As is the custom of Ensemble Monterey, Conductor and Artistic Director Dr. John Anderson offered his insights prior to the concert as a short talk with question/answer session. This opportunity to learn about the music and performers is so vital. Dr. Anderson has a gift for conveying information that engages those literate in music while being accessible to those just beginning their musical journey. It makes concerts more enjoyable when the audience is as attentive and engaged as they were Saturday. These talks along with the excellent printed program are gems we should encourage and take advantage of regularly. 

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Archived in these categories: Baroque, Chamber music, Choral, Vocal, Vocal ensemble


YMMC Chamber Players at Hidden Valley

Elizabeth Mendoza, Lance Yang Bauer, Hannah Shu, Serenai Dincer,
EB Diallo & Taylen Dincer

Every year we have the opportunity to hear the YMMC Fall and Spring orchestra concerts at Sunset Center in Carmel, and, as always, we marvel at the levels of instrumental skill and musical maturity the young players of the Youth and Honors orchestra display so naturally. But also twice a year we have occasion to hear individual players come together in more intimate ensembles to perform chamber music, which gives us a whole different perspective of their instrumental and musical skills.

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Archived in these categories: Chamber music, Strings, Youth Music Monterey


Borodin Quartet in Miami

Borodin Quartet

On Tuesday March 19, 2019, the Borodin Quartet played a program of works by Miaskovsky, Haydn, and Borodin at Coral Gables Congregational Church in Miami. Over the years, many of Russia’s most famous musicians have played in the Borodin Quartet, Russia’s most famous quartet, which will celebrate its 75th Anniversary next season. Among the great Russian musicians who played in the quartet have been violist Rudolf Barshai (1945 -1953), Mstislav Rostropovich (1945), the Borodin’s original first cellist, who was succeeded by the legendary cellist Valentin Berlinsky who was then the quartet’s cellist for over 60 years.

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Archived in these categories: 20th Century, Chamber music


Carmel Trio in Aptos

Sometimes you find a wonderful experience when you least expect it. I had the pleasure of listening to a fine collection of Sonatas for piano and strings in the afternoon of Feb. 10, 2019. The Carmel Trio (Nicola Samra, Violin; Christopher Healy, Cello; and James Neiman, Piano) presented 3 works: Two Sonatas for piano and violin (Mozart and Beethoven) and a Sonata for piano and cello (Rachmaninoff). Our thanks to the community of the Episcopal Church of St. John the Baptist in Aptos for sharing their space. I thoroughly enjoyed the fine performance.

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Archived in these categories: Cello, Chamber music, Piano, Violin


Brentano Quartet & Pianist Yekwon Sunwoo at Sunset Center

It was a pleasure to welcome back the Brentano Quartet for a return engagement after its highly acclaimed performance for the Carmel Music Society in 2013. On this occasion, the quartet was joined by 29-year-old pianist Yekwon Sunwoo, Gold Medalist at the Fifteenth Van Cliburn International Piano Competition, who had recently appeared on the Carmel Music Society’s series in September 2018.

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Archived in these categories: Carmel Music Society, Chamber music, Classical Era, Piano trio