Review by Terry Gaisin
The OCO has a history of creative ways to attract support and contributions. Even our ARTS REVIEW had the imaginative idea of door prizes that incorporated assisting in the next concert’s critique; a restaurant dinner and an evaluation (always positive) of said eatery. The laminated and mounted article then was hung in the diner’s entryway. It was a desirable prize.
Since relocating to Hamilton, we’ve forsworn the concept, but OCO also has other innovative ideas and an afternoon at Joshua Creek Art gallery for music, food and silent auction was a success.
The first hour featured hors d’ouvres, wine and some creative blended drinks plus the OCO’s string quartet playing the more familiar selections of the genre. A featured performer was violinist Leslie Ashworth who rendered a sensitive version of the Mozart 4th concerto. Her focus and obvious concentration suited both the venue and occasion. She was accompanied by Linda Ruan who subsequently performed a piano composition by Charles Demuynck titled ‘Intermezzo.’.
Myriam Blardone is a harpist with the gentlest of touches. Possessing rather short fingers, she is still able to display faultless technique and a special sense of harmonic melody. Her reading of Debussy’s ‘Clair de lune’ was enchanting. To offer exposure to the younger musicians… something dear to the hearts of members and Board of O.C.O.; Eric Guo performed a dynamic version of ‘Muzzeppa’. This is a young man whose talent seems fraught with promise. Then, Ashworth was joined by Herb Williams for some light background inside the hall. Outside, Latin jazz was being offered by Eliana Cuevas, a tri-(or maybe more) lingual vocalist.
It was while outdoors that both the muse and I did a double take. Seated near us was a spitting image doppelganger for “Linda Hunt”; the diminutive director of NCIS Los Angeles; a popular TV show and a favourite of the Gaisin household.
The list of contributors and gift donors bears witness to the backbone support the orchestra receives not only from Oakville, but even the cities that border it. The catering was provided by”A La Mode” whose chef Jonathan Brum also has a reputation for his high class catering for the private Jet set! And speaking of food, every attendee received a complimentary coupon for any of “Seasons” three locations .
The Chamber Orchestra is a worthwhile organization whose artistic contribution to the community can’t be overstated. They deserve full houses at each of their concerts.