Student Recital Q&A

Ten students showed off their interpretations of various pieces this Wednesday in a Student Recital. The recital featured performances by David Benedict ’15, Eunji Kim ’14, Catherine Liu ’15, Katherine Vega ’14, Amanda Reichenbach ’14, Wei Han Lim ’16, Nathan Sheng ’14, Ian Jackson ’16, Marcus Thompson ’15, John Gibson ‘15 and Harvey Wu ’14. The following is a Q&A with several of the performers. Tambourin by Jean-Philippe Rameau —David Benedict ’15, Eunji Kim ’14, Catherine Liu ’15, Katherine Vega ’14 (Flute Ensemble) Vega: “There are two different types of challenges [of playing in a group]. The first category is music-related. It’s hard to keep a group in tune. It’s hard not to lose tempo when people are playing parts of varying difficulty. It’s hard to coordinate dynamics so that no part ever overpowers a more important one. All these problems are fixed with a lot of rehearsal, patience and metronomes. The second category is logistical—it’s hard finding a time that works for everyone.” Prelude in E minor, Op. 28, No. 4 by Frédéric Chopin—Ian Jackson ’16 (piano) “I chose to play this piece because it is one of my favorite Chopin pieces. I am a huge fan of Chopin, and I love how there’s a sadness and beauty to this short piece… There is a sense of sadness and beauty at the same time that comes from of the softness of the notes. The minor key really brings in the sadness, while the melody has a beautiful touch to it. I really like Chopin because of how his compositions vary in intensity. While a main part of a composition may be soft and calm, he throws in a really fast, difficult part that somehow fits with the piece.” Sonata in E-Flat Major by Joseph Haydn—John Gibson ’15 (piano) “This Haydn Sonata is a very interesting one in that it is the last one he said could be managed on a harpsichord (at the time, the piano wasn’t nearly as popular as it is now). When studying the piece, I’ve had to keep that in mind and think about how it would have been played on the original instrument (for instance, loud chords would always have been rolled because the harpsichord wasn’t as resonant as the piano).” Two Nocturnes, Op. 62 by Frédéric Chopin—Harvey Wu ’14 (piano) “The two nocturnes from Op. 62 are among the last compositions Chopin ever wrote. In many ways, the colors of these pieces even anticipate impressionism, while at the same time maintaining the wonderful bel canto style of melody so characteristic of Chopin.”