Pianist Hans Boepple in Carmel Home Concert

     

On Sunday afternoon, September 17, at the elegant home of Lyn and Renee Bronson, an invited audience had the unique pleasure of hearing an intimate recital performed by distinguished Santa Clara University pianist Hans Boepple, who has frequently appeared as a soloist on the Carmel Music Society’s series at Sunset Center in Carmel and as a concerto soloist with the Santa Cruz Symphony. The idyllic setting with views of the Pacific Ocean proved to be perfect for meaty program consisting of the following works: Bach’s Toccata in D Major, BWV 912 (1710), César Franck’s Prelude, Chorale and Fugue (1884), Rachmaninoff’s Prelude in D Major, Op. 23, No. 4 (1903) and Chopin’s Sonata No. 3 in B Minor, Op. 58 (1844). Read full story

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


CBF Chamber Concert: “Le Mozart Noir” in Paris

Portrait c. 1787 of composer Joseph Bologne, Chevalier de Saint-Georges (1745-1799), dubbed “Le Mozart Noir”

On July 21 the Carmel Bach Festival Chamber Concert, Mozart in Paris at 2:30 pm at All Saints Church, introduced many of us to an intriguing classical composer about whom we had never heard, known as Le Mozart Noir. From the program notes written by Allan Whear, found on page 170 of the 2017 CBF program book, “Saint-Georges is without a doubt one of the most fascinating characters in music history, worthy of a romantic novel or Hollywood screenplay. Born on the Caribbean Island of Guadeloupe, he was the son of a Senegalese slave [Nanon], and a French plantation owner. His father, *George Bologne de Saint-Georges, became wealthy raising sugar cane in the New World, and returned to Paris [with his son and Nanon] to become a minor aristocrat.” Saint-Georges was brought up as a gentleman in Paris and received musical training in violin and composition.As a young man, he led orchestras, published a body of instrumental and vocal works, and premiered his own compositions while becoming quite well-known in musical and aristocratic circles. “He also excelled at fencing, becoming known as the finest swordsman in France.” The most famous image of Saint-Georges is a dashing portrait of the composer portrayed with a sword, painted in 1787 by Mather Brown. Read full story

Archived in these categories: Baroque, Chamber music, Classical Era


Deutsche Marks — German Virtuosity at Menlo

The Saturday July 22 Concert Program III at [email protected], “German Virtuosity,” transported the Italian violin tradition from Cremona northward, as deftly demonstrated in five elegantly performed works at the Menlo-Atherton’s Center for Performing Arts. Works by Rode, Beethoven, Spohr, David, and Mendelssohn graced a felicitous program that took Beethoven’s last sonata as a point of departure for the violin’s emergence into a burgeoning Romantic tradition in which the instrument would soar in expressive range and scale. Read full story

Archived in these categories: Chamber music, Classical Era, Romantic Era


Beethoven’s Ninth Symphony Ends CBF First Week

The first week of Carmel Bach Festival 2017 ended not with a whimper, but with a bang, and quite a big bang at that. With three masterpieces on the program and seemingly a cast of thousands on stage, we were hearing the Carmel Bach Festival at its best.

In the pre-concert lecture David Gordon described the circumstances of the premier of Beethoven’s Ninth Symphony on May 7, 1824. It was by any standard a near disaster — hastily thrown together, under rehearsed and a bitter experience for Beethoven, not only because of his deafness, but also as a drain on his finances at a time in his life when he was most vulnerable. Read full story

Archived in these categories: Carmel Bach Festival, Choral, Classical Era, Orchestral


Carmel Bach Festival — “A Night in Vienna”

We hear grumbles from a few people who are saying, “This is the Carmel Bach Festival? But where’s the Bach? Where’s the Baroque?” And it is true that during the current festival, some of the main evening programs are completely devoid of any works by Bach. It’s time to face up to it. The Carmel Bach Festival is continuing to evolve in new directions, and this has been happening for a long time. Although some CBF programming features Bach’s influence among subsequent composers from the 19th to the 21st centuries, we are also hearing programs that are just plain fun. Such a program we heard last night at Sunset Center — “An Evening in Vienna, led by CBF Concertmaster Peter Hanson.” Read full story

Archived in these categories: Carmel Bach Festival, Classical Era, Orchestral