Thumps against the body of an acoustic guitar resonated with the accelerating melodies of a flute until both instruments immediately fell silent. Then, after a subtle pause, each instrument was brought up again to continue “Three Balkan Dances” by composer Clarice Assad.
Featuring Meghan Jacoby, Adjunct Instructor in Music, on the flute and Daniel Acsadi[a][b] on the guitar, the Faculty Flute Recital consisted of four pieces, each written by different composers, including Assad. The recital took place on Sunday, January 12 in the Timken Room.
Audience member Ariel Wang ’21 said, “I liked the [Three] Balkan Dances… because it really had a wide range of emotions and techniques inside the entire piece. And even in one movement, there would be really intimate and really sweet music but also really wild flutter tonguing and loud music, and it was really contrasting.”
The performance aimed to consider musical identity from the perspective of the composer through the four different pieces. Jacoby believed that the recital went well, noting that she and Acsadi rehearsed a lot in preparation for the recital and enjoyed the process as a whole.
“I think we had a lot of fun playing it and hopefully the audience had a lot of fun listening to it… I think we did some things a little differently. [“Fifteen Hungarian Peasant Songs” by Béla Bartók] was one that we’ve played a lot before together so it was kind of fun to feel very comfortable and maybe more relaxed with that one,” said Jacoby.
Both Jacoby and Acsadi agreed on the success of their performance of “Fifteen Hungarian Peasant Songs,” which included an arrangement originally created by Acsadi. Wang also expressed appreciation for this piece, especially the incorporated arrangement. As a student of Jacoby, she enjoyed watching her teacher perform, in particular, the phrasing and techniques of her playing.
“It’s really important as a student to be able to see what you should sound like… I feel like it’s only in these kinds of small recital settings that you can get exposed to music like this, especially with guitar and with chamber music like this—sitting so up close in such an intimate setting, you can see how detailed everything is,” said Wang.
According to Ascadi, he and Jacoby have performed three of the four pieces they played at the recital multiple times before, with their first time being in June. “Three Balkan Dances” was the only new piece that the duo learned for the recital.
“It’s a great opportunity, you know, every time we play it, that it gels a little bit more. It feels a little easier and it feels a little bit more comfortable and also we can take more risks the more we play some of the music,” said Acsadi.