Classic Music Analysis Quartet Gelato Concert
Quartet Gelato’s concert the Encore was held in the Auditorium, the attending band was one of the most influential modern groups in classical music and it was a real treat to be physically at their concert. The band members present were Colin Maier, Elizabeth McClellan, Alexander Sevestian and Peter de Sotto, each whom specialized in an instrument and singing voice. In preparation for the concert, the hall had been tastefully decorated using a combination of colored lights designed to produce a subtle yet illuminative effect on the cast. Soft light appeared to glow on stage and although it showed everything clearly, there was no harsh glare as is sometimes the case. The audience waited in anticipation for the performance to begin murmuring among each other while some leafed through their musical notes.
The most enthralling piece for me was “Under Paris Skies” a classical performance that they played in tribute to the composer Any William. This song was particularly touching since, unlike most of the others, which were done in French, this had an English version. It appealed to the audience because of its ardent lyric and the powerful undertow of its rhythms engendering the romance and beauty of the song opening it up even for those who did not understand the words. Given that the song was produced in the 60’s it instrumentals were modern in nature, which made it easy for the performers to do justice to it using their timeless and transcendent talent. Artists combined a variety of melodic flavors alternating from South American to European sounds and beats. The result was a very romantic and serene feel that drifted over from the radiance of the musicians on stage to the rapt attention of those of us listening in the audience. This song by itself is a powerful sound and when played by team of virtuosos, it feels practically Celestial.
Antonio Pasculli’s Oboe Concerto was the high point of the second session of the presentation, aside from its inherent beauty, the music called upon the team intensify their synchrony. They had to integrate their various instruments to create enough harmony to do justice to the maestro’s work. The performance was spectacular, the sort that make one feel they cannot really expect to hear anything better than it does in a long time, which in this case was quite correct.
While I must admit that all the artists did and excellent job, if I have to pick the one whose work a loved most it would be Elizabeth McClellan. She proved to be the stabilizing factor in the performance and maintained the rhythm and lower bass register. She made it look so very easy but from a critical point of view, it was evident that she fused numerous styles to achieve her atypical albeit subtle performance. She proved very resilient as Cellists often have to be and, even though, the accordion at times appeared to drown out some of her parts; she was overall very impressive. In addition, the fact that she was the only women in the band gave her, at least in my opinion, a novel value, in that she stood out and expressed herself in her music without losing her femininity. That said, I also found Peter De Sotto, who is the most decorated member of the band exquisite at the violin, as well as his remarkably diverse singing voices. Between performances, they interacted with us and although I did not get a one on one with him, I admired his genial and easygoing way.
The concert is without doubt one of the most brilliant performances I have ever witnessed and although I cannot claim to understand classical music as much as I do contemporary genres I will happily attend many more. The music made me feel like I could suspend my thinking. Stress and worries, just sit back, and let it massage my soul. I must admit that prior to the concert, I had only read about the group but I had already formed a negative picture of them in my mind as probably boring and out of touch. It turned out it was I who was out of touch and there was nothing boring about the show. In fact, they smashed right through my preconceived notions of sober and solemn classical musicians by proving to be funny and down to earth people who could not only play but also sing with astonishing skill. This concert gave me new musical perspective and a chance to reflect on the beauty of genres that people rarely spare enough time to appreciate. In case they did and felt the way I did, classical music would be mainstream just like hip-hop and RnB among other modern genres that get biggest audiences.
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