Youth Music Monterey — Mother’s Musical Souvenir

YMMC Competition Winner Courtney McDonald

Youth Music Monterey County attracted a huge audience at Sunset Center on Sunday afternoon. YMMC President Dorothy Micheletti gave a warm welcome to the talented young performers, their families who support them, and to their hardworking teachers who inspire them. She also gave thanks to all the donors whose financial generosity makes it possible to present concerts in a very professional venue like Sunset Center, rather than in a school auditorium on squeaky chairs or, heavens forbid, a gymnasium — where some youth orchestras with leaner budgets might end up performing. Thanks were also given to Hidden Valley Music Seminars, whose Director, Peter Meckel, continues to provide much needed rehearsal facilities. Since this concert not only represented the end of YMMC’s 2017-2018 season, but also the 30th anniversary of the founding of YMMC, the audience was invited to a birthday celebration following the concert with lavish goodies and birthday cake in the lobby and on the patio outside. Read full story

Archived in these categories: 20th Century, Competition, Concerto, Orchestral, Romantic Era, Youth Music Monterey


Monterey Symphony — Talented young artists from the Curtis Institute of Music

Pianist Michael Davidman

I can’t remember when I have enjoyed a performance of a Mozart piano concerto as much as I did the dazzling, charming performance we heard last night by 20-year-old Michael Davidman. A student at the Curtis Institute of Music, Davidman was sharing the limelight on this occasion, the 4th program in the Monterey Symphony’s “Grand Piano Series,” with guest conductor Conor Gray Covington, a recent graduate of the Curtis Institute of Music, who at a young age already has an an impressive list of accomplishments to his credit. Read full story

Archived in these categories: Classical Era, Concerto, Monterey Symphony, Piano trio


YMMC’s Junior Youth and Honors Orchestra at Sunset Center

Simon Liu Performing Rachmaninoff’s Piano Concerto No. 2

Some of the most eagerly anticipated events in our music season on the Monterey Peninsula are the concerts presented twice each year by Youth Music Monterey County (YMMC) in collaboration with Youth Orchestra of Salinas (YOSAL). Those of us with long memories can remember YMMC’s modest beginnings over thirty-five years ago when its concerts were presented in the auditorium at Santa Catalina School. During those early years the string players in the Junior Youth Orchestra needed their teachers on stage for ten minutes at the beginning of each concert to help them tune their instruments. Read full story

Archived in these categories: Concerto, Piano, Romantic Era, Youth Music Monterey


Gentle Ecstasies: Master Sinfonia in Concert

David Ramanadoff, Conductor

The Master Sinfonia Chamber Orchestra, David Ramanadoff conducting, presented a fine concert, Sunday afternoon, January 28, at the Los Altos United Methodist Church, with a program of Vaughan Williams, Mozart, and Mendelssohn. Veteran pianist Hans Boepple made excellent sense of Mozart’s valedictory Piano Concerto No. 27 in B-flat Major, K. 595, ingratiating its exquisite contours in a manner that several times took this reviewer back to the “golden” pianism of Sir Clifford Curzon, especially in the E-flat Major Larghetto. The final work, Mendelssohn’s Third Symphony, the “Scottish,” received from Ramanadoff a clear and controlled reading, as expansive as it proved eminently lyrical and dramatic. Read full story

Archived in these categories: Classical Era, Concerto, Orchestral, Piano, Romantic Era


MPC Concert Band gives us an evening with Gershwin

Pianist Lucy Faridany & Conductor John Anderson

A capacity audience turned out to hear the MPC Concert Band in its Gershwin concert last night in MPC’s Theater, and it was a supercharged audience that tended to linger around after the concert was over. This was a larger than life band — I mean five tubas, five trombones, four trumpets, and more versions of a clarinet than I even knew existed, and everybody played their hearts out.

Over the years Conductor John Anderson has built what amounts to a community band with a span of ages from age 16 to 70’s plus  (actually I think I saw in the ensemble on stage one man in his eighties). We can assume that for enthusiastic professional and amateur jazz players an opportunity to perform in the MPC Concert Band under the direction of veteran John Anderson ranks up there with the more important events in their lives. Read full story

Archived in these categories: 20th Century, Concerto, Jazz, Monterey Peninsula College, Piano