Oh My God! This was such a perfect punctuation of amazement! It came from everyone, it came in different colors and tastes: “OMG what a beautiful music”, “OMG what amazing voices”, “OMG what lovely rendition”, “OMG the music enveloped me!” and so on. A beautiful full moon, mild temperatures, and the garden space were the co-authors of this special experience.
In case you were unable to attend, the artists on the program were asked to choose performance pieces for which there was some “OMG” reference, whether about the piece or their own relationship with the music. This was shared with the audience, both verbally and through amazing artistry.
Luciana Gallo, cellist, opened the night with a vibrant performance of Cassado’s Suite for Cello Solo in D Minor. Ms. Gallo’s playing was profound. Her musicality and the flashiness required by this piece offered a most enjoyable experience. It was a definitive OMG moment shared by all in the audience.
Hannah Goldstick’s choice of Bach’s Chaconne in D Minor was touching and inspiring. In Hannah’s words ‘the Chaconne is the presence of God in the church’ were a perfect expression for one of the greatest creations of a music genius. Bach composed this piece in memory of his first wife, after he returned from a trip to discover that she had died. Hannah’s interpretation was exquisite and deeply moving. Her engrossment made the performance even more enchanting. She took the audience with her in an incredible and intense journey. Hannah is just 16 years of age, a senior in high school, and has already auditioned for Cleveland Institute, New England, and Julliard for the next school year. It was profound to see how Hannah had internalized this piece: First, this complex piece was perfectly memorized; and, second, she communicated so much passion and emotion through the notes. For lovers of the violin this was a most special OMG moment.
Desert City Jazz Ensemble led a nostalgic tour through great moments in the history of jazz. The group delighted and wowed the audience with great original compositions that most of us know well. There was the memorable Yardbird Suite composed by Charlie Parker in 1946 that hailed the advent of bebop. And then came a beautiful rendition of Here’s That Rainy Day made popular by Jimmy Van Heusen. That brought us to the 60’s and the Brazilian bossa nova with Tom Jobim. The band’s journey concluded with the classic All The Things You Are, composed by Jerome Kern. This group is comprised of dedicated talented musicians who filled the room with bold jazzy sound that delighted and amazed the audience. They generously shared history of the tunes and the players with great audience interaction, not to mention the toe-tapping, finger-snapping, and jaw-dropping interchange from the audience.
Brielle Amrein and Drake Sherman joined us fresh from a recent performance of the timeless “West Side Story” at the Gammage Theater. We were graced with some of the most beautiful songs created by Bernstein in the intimate setting and wonderful acoustics of the room. In the role of Tony, Drake’s voice filled the room, and Brielle playing the role of Maria sang with a pristine voice and passionate acting. Drake and Brielle have a natural chemistry and the audience was mesmerized into the illusion of their passion and love. They were fun to watch and beautiful and romantic surprise to all of us.
As with prior salons, the program this night was eclectic in musical genres, but amazingly consistent with our theme. OMG this was a truly special salon experience! You may relive some of the moments in the album and video below. The next salon will be on Sunday, November 4. Please, mark your calendars.