Senior Recital: Skanda Koppula ’13 and Eric Ouyang ’13

In a collaborative Senior recital, violinists Skanda Koppula ’13 and Eric Ouyang ’13 celebrated their music careers at Andover with a wide selection of violin pieces that complemented each other.

Ouyang and Koppula, accompanied by Harvey Wu ’14 on the piano, alternately performed their solo pieces until the end of the program when they played in the classical duet “Double Violin Concerto” by J.S. Bach together.

“We wanted our selection to encompass a diversity of styles and difficulties. That’s why we have fast and slow pieces. And the ‘Bach Concerto’ is such a diverse piece in itself that features fast and slow movements,” said Ouyang.

Ouyang kicked off the recital by playing “Romanian Folk Dances” by Bela Bartók, a boisterous piece that featured four quick movements that exemplify Bartók’s classic dissonance. Ouyang’s passionate manner and the riotous melodies evoked loud applauses from the audience.

In addition to classical pieces, Ouyang also selected contemporary pieces like the theme from the award-winning movie, “Schindler’s List.” The piece was composed by John Williams for the famous violinist Itzhak Perlman. Ouyang captured the poignant emotion of the piece through his technically-precise and emotionally-rich rendition of the song.

The woeful nature of the chords played by Wu contributed beautifully to the dark atmosphere of the piece.

Ouyang then gave the stage to Koppula, who performed Jean-Baptiste Accolay’s “A Minor Violin Concerto.” Although the piece is often referred to as a “student concerto,” a piece that is intended for mainly beginner musicians, it still features virtuosic movements of the left and right hands, such as the wild string crossings from the G-string to the E-string. Koppula successfully executed all the technicalities in the piece.

Koppula’s rendition of Gabriel Fauré’s “Berceuse for Violin and Piano,” was applause-worthy. His light fingering across the fingerboard and firm bowing exuded the vivid and memorable melodies of the piece.

The recital climaxed with Koppula and Ouyang’s joint rendition of the Bach “Double Violin Concerto.” Ouyang opened the movement by being on first violin and Koppula on second. According to Ouyang and Koppula, they were most excited about playing Bach together. They successfully communicated with each other through nuanced gestures, tossing the theme of the music back and forth without hesitation.

“They played off each each other very well, and their tight communication made the music seem more balanced,” said Julia Kim ’14.

During the reception, Koppula admitted to taking a stand from Graves Hall to bring back to his room in Foxcroft Hall so that he could practice in his room every day. Koppula promised to bring back the stand to Graves now that the recital is over.