By MASON MCCLAY – CENTO WRITER
This year’s Musicians’ Showcase assembled a unique compilation of an unexpected variety, which left the audience wildly impressed. “How captivating it is to experience these beautiful sounds being made by your classmates- a talent you were entirely unaware that many of them have…” first-year Billy Forbess said.
“At a certain point, I wasn’t sure how to react. I sort of sat there in awe,” first-year Lola Fakunle said in response to first-year Austin Bates’s clarinet performance.
Among the instrumental pieces that included both junior Nick Teale and Bates were: a trio of trumpeters, first-year Peyton Goodman, sophomore Sue Choi, and senior Sarah Palmer, performing “Fanfare for a Friend”; sophomore Kimmy Zhang on guitar and senior Yiqiao Li on bass playing a romantic Chinese piece called “Dong Xiao Jie”; first-year McKenzie Bottoms on flute performing “Fantasia NO. 2 in A minor”; first-year Caitlin Johnson on violin performing “Meditation for ‘Thais’”; senior Paige Coomer on French horn playing the “I. Allegro from Concerto for Horn No.1 in Eb Minor”; as well as Li on bass guitar and first-year Zhiyu Zhang on drums concluding the showcase with two pieces, “La saidon de pluies” and “Liberty City.”
Adding to the richness of the instrumental pieces were the vocal performances of the night, first-year Sarah Fall (soprano) elegantly performing “Quella Fiamma”; Teale (tenor) singing a second piece, “Go, Lovely Rose”; a breathtaking performance by first-year Emile O’Connor (soprano), “Deh veni, non tardar”; and junior Mary Burger (alto), singing “A Little Bit in Love.”
A noticeable facet of each performance was how genuine every student performed his or her piece. The desire to express an experience or emotion was evident throughout the showcase. Fall uses a method of practice that allows her to perform in a way that she can express a pure inner experience. “Well, I began my training by understanding the translation of the piece (originally in Italian),” Fall said. “The more I sang, the more I realized the depth of the translation. This piece was about a woman madly in love. The goal for me, basically, was to place myself in the perspective of the woman in this piece.”
What was the mentality necessary for Teale to express the motion conveyed in “Destruction Sonata”?
“I wanted to capture the sound of our society on the verge of absolute chaos,” said Teale. “I placed intermittent measures that seemed pretty, but as soon as you were about to get used to a gentle melody, measures of discord were introduced. Like society was trying to reach a sort of purposeful goal, and then fell onto itself with each attempt.”
With the amount of creativity and beauty that was seen in this year’s Musicians Showcase, and knowing that these musicians will only continue to develop in their skill and their ability to express, one can only imagine how captivating next year’s showcase will be.