Music Review: Solo And Chamber Music For Flute

I attended the Solo and Chamber Music for Flute in the Light Recital Hall on Tuesday, November 07, 2006 at 7:30p.m. UW Whitewater’s Music Department presented a Music Mosaics Concert featuring Robin Fellows, who played flute, Myung-Hee Chung, who played piano, and Julie Cross, who sang soprano.

After skimming the program before the performance began, I noticed the phrase Cantata No. 45, and remembered learning about Cantatas at the beginning of the music section for WOTA. Cantata is a choral work with one or more soloists and an instrument ensemble.

The particular Cantata that was being played was in the second song, “Gott, ist Unser Sonn’ und Schild” by J.S. Bach and was used as a duet between the flute and the singer with the chorus of the piano.

The first song, “Wer Gott bekennt aus wahren Herzensgrund,” was also by J.S. Bach, but had a more joyful and upbeat melody.
The rest of the performance was done using only the piano and flute. The third song, by Louis Ganne, was “Andante et Scherzo” and had three different parts to it. The beginning was a sad and somber tone, the middle had a lot of flute repetition, and the end was a quick pace.

In the final piece before the intermission were a sort of bi-polar mood swings in Garbriel Faure’s “Fantasie” which were broken up into two parts: Andantino where the piano was low and somber and the flute alternated between high and low pitches, and also Allegro where both instruments repeated after the other in an excited harmony.

After the intermission “Sonatina for Flute and Piano,” by Eldin Burton, began with three different mini sections of Allegretto Grazioso, of deep, somber, yet high pitches; Andantino Sognando, of calming lullabies that turned to fearful confusion; and Allegro Giocoso, an upbeat rhythm with a quick pace.

The very last piece was “Serenade” by Howard Hanson. This particular song started off slow and somber, and then picked up with the piano repeating while the flute danced, then slowly began to die down, and then ended with a gentle resurrection to life again.

I found this event to be quite enjoyable, however, I think it could use less or shorter pauses. By pauses, I mean, the performers kept exiting the stage after each song section, including the intermission, but it was too much of looking at an empty stage for my taste.

It seemed awkward and nobody knew why they kept leaving; many people kept looking around or whispering, and weren’t really sure when to clap either. I was very surprised with how complete their music sounded with only a singer, a piano, and a flute.

I was shocked at how well they did with the small amount that they had to work with. I would definitely recommend this to others as long as they know to expect some delays.

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