Kaki Elgin

Katherine “Kaki” Elgin ’09 took center stage in the Timken Room, as she showcased her talent on the French horn Friday evening. At Elgin’s senior recital, the audience experienced a unique concert devoted to the graceful performance of a powerful low brass instrument. In her first piece, Elgin played Horn Sonata in F Major, Op. 17 by Ludwig van Beethoven accompanied by Christopher Walter, Instructor in Music. Elgin easily maneuvered between various registers and dynamics, revealing her talent. She continued to impress with her deft fingers as she flew through complex passages that would throw off many players. Her second piece, Gilbert Vinter’s “Hunter’s Moon,” continued to feature the beautiful combination of French horn and piano. However, Andi Zhou ’09 replaced Walter at the piano to accompany his fellow senior. The piece moved away from the classical genre and opened with powerful, triumphant notes from Elgin. This piece had a jazzy feel and featured mutes, a technique that creates a piercing, brassy sound from the horn. Fellow French hornist Ryan Canavan ’12 said that the use of the mute “really shows Kaki’s mastery of her instrument and control over it.” In the final piece before the intermission, Elgin was once again joined by Zhou as well as Emily Wei ’09 on the violin. The three performed Horn Trio in E-Flat Major, showcasing their musical skills as a synced trio. The audience especially appreciated the call and response between Wei and Elgin. In her final piece, Horn Concerto No. 1, Elgin performed her last solo at Andover with immeasurable grace and talent. She had already played this piece at orchestra, but it served as a valiant, regal farewell to Andover. The audience greeted Elgin with a standing ovation after the performance and tears stained the faces of a few people in the room. Elgin’s French horn instructor Robin Milinazzo said, “I’m speechless. I can think of every superlative to describe Kaki… Her personality really comes through her playing. She’s a teacher’s dream.” Audience member Curie Kim ’09 said, “By far the most fabulous senior recital I’ve seen. It showed the various facets of the instrument and it was great to hear the sound of the French horn take center stage.”