Student Recital: Poulenc, Chopin, Crumb

Chen Cao, cello

A student recital featuring:

Poulenc: Trio for Oboe, Bassoon, and Piano
BOK Trio: Alexandra von der Embse, oboe; Wade Coufal, bassoon; and Michelle Cann, piano

In 2014 Curtis Institute of Music launched “ArtistYear.” This fellowship program brings arts-based programs and education to underserved communities. The ArtistYear fellows for 2014-2015 were Alexandra von der Embse (Oboe ’12), Wade Coufal (Bassoon ’14), and Michelle Cann (Piano ’13). The trio known as the BOK Trio performs this Poulenc: Trio for Oboe, Bassoon, and Piano with grace and purpose. Poulenc was known to suffer from manic-depression and you can hear it in this composition. One minute it is joyous and the next moment dark. The three movements are marked: Lento-Presto; Andante and Rondo.

Chopin: Mazurkas, Op. 56
Kate Liu, piano

Chopin composed Mazurkas, Op. 56 in 1845 for solo piano. It consist of the following: No. 1 in B major: Allegro non tanto; No. 2 in C major: Vivace; and No. 3 in C minor: Moderato. Performed by Kate Liu from Winnetka, Ill is a student of Robert McDonald and entered Curtis in 2012.

Chopin: Fantasie in F minor, Op. 49
Kate Liu, piano

‘Today I finished the Fantasy – and the sky is beautiful, there’s a sadness in my heart – but that’s alright. If it were otherwise, perhaps my existence would be worth nothing to anyone’, Chopin wrote in a letter to his close friend Julian Fontana, a pianist and composer after finishing Fantasie.  Fantasie in F minor, Op.49 is considered one of Chopin’s longest and greatest works. Composed in 1841 at the age of 31, Chopin wanted to show freedom from the rules so he named this single movement work Fantasie (fantasy).

Crumb: Sonata for Solo Cello
Chen Cao, cello

George Crumb could be regarded as one of America’s most celebrated composers. The Sonata for Solo Cello was dedicated to his mother Vivian a cellist. It is marked by the following movements: Fantasia: Andante espressivo e con molto rubato; Tema pastorale con variazioni; and Toccata: Largo e drammatico—Allegro vivace. Chen Cao entered Curtis in 2013 from Beijing, China. He says while he was playing the Sonata he was thinking of water, “it is soft like water and flexible”.

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