‘CELLO BELLAS’, earn a capacity crowd ovation Reply

Review by Judith CaldwellreviewerJudith
Sandra Bohn, Rachel Desoer, Nadia Klein, Elspeth Poole, Rachel Mercer and Rebecca Morton are the Cello Bellas, or maybe they should be called the Sisterhood of the Travelling Cellos. They are a group of young musicians who are technically extremely good and who display an obvious love of their instrument and a great sense of fun.
On Saturday evening they played a Benefit concert to a sold out audience who obviously share their love of the cello.

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O.C.O. & Israelievitch – ace Beethoven Reply

Review by Danny Gaisinreviewer_Danny
He only wrote one violin concerto, but like his 6th symphony; the Bagatelle; sonatas 8 & 14; quantity is secondary to quality. The D-major op.61 with its thematic opening notes that reprise throughout the 23-minute allegro opening are, and will remain, timeless *. Over a half-century ago, I heard the late Henryk Szeryng perform this piece with the Montreal Symphony Orchestra. Last night Jacques Israelievitch gave an outstanding reading of the same work. Connection – Israelievitch was a student of Szeryng’s!

Israelievitch & the O.C.O. in performance

Israelievitch & the O.C.O. in performance

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Stabat Mater; a Musikay concert Reply

Review by Judith CaldwellreviewerJudith
On Saturday evening Musikay, professional musicians under the direction of Maestro Stephane Potvin, performed the Baroque music by Handel and Pergolesi. Concerto grosso op 6 no 4 by George Frideric Handel opened the evening and even though this work was composed after Handel had been living in England for some time, the Italian influence is unmistakable. In the excellent program notes Potvin told us that Handel ‘learned much from Corelli’s compositional style, including clear, forceful construction, juxtaposition of homophony and polyphony, contrast of movements, and use of dance forms.’

the musicians of MUSIKAY

the performers of Musikay

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Yao Guang Zhai, clarinet; guest of 5@1st Reply

Review by Judith Caldwell
               Hamilton is very fortunate to have Rachel Mercer living here.  She is a cellist and also the Artistic Director for 5 @ the First, a concert series of chamber music which features many of her extremely talented friends.  On Saturday evening the featured guest was Yao Guang Zhai, a young Chinese clarinet player who is currently associate principal clarinet with the Toronto Symphony.  He performed duets and a trio with Mercer on cello & Angela Park on piano.

Park & Zhai

Park and Zhai…post performance

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Weiss & Kuerti Jr. with the HPO Reply

Review by Danny GaisinreviewerDGcolor
                    Most conductors interpret a composition; some like Julian Kuerti examine, even analyze a subject work. This was evident in his orchestra positioning, erudite commentary to the audience and certainly obvious during his rendering of a smoothly segued Strauss Metamorphosen & the Beethoven Egmont overture. He demonstrated an innate sense of which passages should be accentuated, and selected tempi /pauses for minimizing or exaggerating. The result was dramatic but without musical histrionics.

Weiss & Kuerti + the HPO

Weiss & Kuerti + the HPO

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5 at the 1st – #3, with guest Caitlin Muller Reply

Review by Judith CaldwellreviewerJudith
               Quartet Atlantik is so named because violinist Akemi Mercer,  and her husband Dirk Niewoehner, viola, live and work in Germany while her sister Rachel Mercer, cello, and Rachel’s partner Yehonatan Berick  live  & work in Canada.  Rehearsal times are tough to arrange.
Last evening’s concert, the third in the 5 @ the First series, opened with a special guest, Caitlin Muller, playing Felix Mendelssohn’s Prelude Op.104 No2 in B flat minor for piano.

the Quartet Atlantik musicians

the Quartet Atlantik musicians

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