by Danny Gaisin
The name “5 at the First” is a clever acknowledgement of its usual numerical complement and its performance location at the Unitarian church on Dundurn. Last evening, it was Six @ the 1st. and they were an impressive half-dozen. Violinists Yehonatan Berick & Csaba Koczo; Caitlin Boyle and Theresa Rudolph –violists and the Rachel’s – Desoer & Mercer – celli; made quite a team. Performing Mozart & Schoenberg offered two ends of a musical spectrum.
Koczo, Berick, Desoer, Mercer,Boyle & Rudolph
Review by Danny Gaisin
Verdi’s 1871 masterful, perfect, operatic tragedy possesses everything…a libretto that covers intense love; jealousy; intrigue; angst and martyrdom. It begs for grandiose settings that excite audiences & cast; plus, some of the most memorable and challenging arias & themes in the genre. This (recuperating) old fan has seen AIDA in formats that range from the über-elaborate to a rather creative vocal-quartet suite. I admit to enjoying all of them.
Pomeroy, Azrieli & Boteva…the dynamic triangle
by Judith Caldwell
On Wednesday, July 10th the National Academy Orchestra of the Brott Music Festival gave us a varied program of music and art culminating in Rimsky-Korsakov’s Scheherazade.
The evening began with a new and very Canadian composition by John Gray. The composer told us this music was inspired by the movements of a standard bred poodle both on and off the leash and it ends with a dissonance where he imagines the dog meets a Rottweiler. It was a very evocative and musically appropriate image.
Review by Judith Caldwell
In their final concert of the 2012/2013 season the Oakville Chamber Orchestra played a Violin Concerto and an Orchestral Suite by Bach as well as the Farewell Symphony of Joseph Haydn. This does not mean ‘farewell’ to the Orchestra, thank goodness, as they also announced their concert line up for the 2013/2014 season and it looks very appealing… the orchestra is obviously thriving under the leadership of conductor Charles Demuynck.
Review by Danny Gaisinreviewerdgcolor1.jpg
Nov. 15th, 2009 “Conductor/arranger/performer/writer Rainer Hersch is a knowledgeable and highly talented musician. What Victor Borge did for (and to) the piano; Stan Freburg to many pop songs of the fifties; and Anna Russell to Wagner’s Ring Cycle- Hersch does to all classical music. He also destroys every preconception about the orchestra, its sections and its instruments. A learning opportunity- hardly; a comedic instance –CERTAINLY. I actually was concerned about peeing in my pants!”
The above intro paragraph is what this journalist opined about Rainer Hersch’s last visit with the Hamilton Philharmonic. Last night; more of the same except that London (the other one) and Beethoven plus Mozart were the subjects for his clever barbs.
Sutherland toasting the audience with her bottle of ‘gargle’
Review by Danny Gaisin
To musicologists; the term ‘romanticism’ refers to the evolved compositional style of the late 18th and 19th centuries. The label derives from the noun meaning optimistic, idealized or subjective. The music reflects on nature, chivalry and even mysticism in formats that are usually dissonant and chromatic with a definitive virtuoso requirement. The OAKVILLE CHAMBER ORCHESTRA’s decision to stage a concert totally within the aegis meant enlisting an artist of such a skill level as to meet the prerequisite. Cellist Rachel Mercer is just such a performer.
Mercer performing with the O.C.O.