by Daniel Hathaway
Fans of organist Paul Jacobs — who is featured in the recently-released Cleveland Orchestra recording of the world premiere of Bernd Richard Deutsch’s Okeanos — can hop digitally across the upper Midwest tonight and catch his recital from Overture Hall in Madison, Wisconsin. He’s playing Baroque transcriptions on the Klais organ, including four Handel Concertos, and J.S. Bach’s Air on the G String and Arioso. The stream is free, but you’ll need to register.
As the Cleveland Institute of Music approaches the end of the semester, its chamber music groups are showing their wares online. Tonight’s broadcast features a woodwind quintet coached by Cleveland Orchestra bassoonist Barrick Stees, countering the gales of November with sunny Caribbean-inspired music: Paquito D’Rivera’s Aires Tropicales.
Another popular Cleveland Orchestra soloist, pianist Aaron Diehl, appears on New York’s 92nd St. Y Series with music by African American composers from William Grant Still to Duke Ellington. Check out that event and many others in the weekly Musical America guide to (mostly) free live streams. You’ll find the link at the top of our Concert Listings page.
OTHER LINKS OF INTEREST:
Fans of the Heinz Poll-era Ohio Ballet will be sad to learn of the death of its music director and pianist David Fisher on November 6. Read an obituary here.
Composer Margi Griebling-Haigh writes that her one-act opera, The White Trout, is now available for viewing on YouTube. The 20+ minute work, which she saw “as a way to do something not only productive, but FUN, during this general moratorium on live musical activities,” is based on an Irish folk tale, and features Gabrielle Haigh (soprano), Brian Keith Johnson (baritone), Jessica Sindell (piccolo), Scott Haigh (double bass), Parker Ramsay (harp), and Randall Fusco (piano), “all tied together with very fun narration by Ty Alan Emerson.”
Mignarda, the voice and lute duo of Donna Stewart and Ron Andrico & Donna Stewart, have also put their time to good use during the cessation of live performances by releasing three new recordings, described below in their own words:
- Heart-Songs, a new recording of our folk music alter-ego (normally kept well-concealed from Mignarda fans, but you just knew something funny was up with us). Released on November 4.
- Mater Dolorosa, a recording of live ensemble tracks from our annual concert of sacred historical music. Released on November 11.
- Unquiet Thoughts, our much-anticipated recording of English lute songs. To be released on November 30.
Visit Mignarda’s website for more information.
Itching for even some virtual foreign travel these days? Before the borders closed, Oberlin grad Wesley Hall spent a year studying in Lübeck, Germany — Dietrich Buxtehude’s turf — and has made a 48-minute video about the organs and churches of that Hanseatic League town, which also figures in Thomas Mann’s novel, Buddenbrooks. “Such amazing instruments, such amazing people,” he writes. Watch Lübeck: Queen of the Hanse here.
Only one birth and one death to memorialize today.
American composer and arranger Hershey Kay was born in Philadelphia on this date in 1919. He studied at the Curtis Institute, where he was a classmate of Leonard Bernstein, who entrusted the scores of On the Town, Peter Pan, and Candide to Kay for orchestration (only rarely do composers take that task on themselves).
Among Kay’s other products was the reconstruction and orchestration of Louis Moreau Gottschalk’s Grande Tarantelle, choreographed by George Balanchine and famously performed by New York City Ballet’s Patricia McBride and Edward Villela. Watch them dance the score here.
And on November 17, 1959, Brazilian composer, pianist, and conductor Heitor Villa-Lobos died in Rio de Janeiro at the age of 72. Among his most celebrated works are the nine Bachianas Brasileiras suites. Written between 1930 and 1945 for various instrumental ensembles, they meld Baroque compositional forms and techniques with Brazilian folk and popular music.
Suite No. 5 for soprano and eight cellos, is among the most-performed. Watch Mark Kosower’s Cleveland Institute of Music cello studio play the two-movement work here with soprano Natasha Simmons in a concert from February 29, 2016.
French guitarist Raphaël Feuillâtre will include music by Villa-Lobos on his Cleveland Classical Guitar Society recital on November 21, streamed from his home in France. During her visit to the CCGS in 2017, Sharon Isbin gave a master class on Villa-Lobos’ Prelude No. 1.
And perhaps local guitarists will recall this performance in Harkness Chapel on May 18, 2017 of his Etude No. 7 by Chaconne Klaverenga, a student of Jason Vieaux at the Cleveland Institute of Music.