(E) One of the best musical secrets of Silicon Valley: Music@Menlo or the finest summer Chamber Music Festival. This Eleventh Season of Music@Menlo organized by Music Directors David Finckel and Wu Han celebrates the music of Johann Sebastian Bach: its sources, its style, its significance. The festival explores how Bach’s music has defined, influenced, and even crafted many generations of composers, over two and a half centuries: Haydn, Mozart, Mendelssohn, Bartok, Shostakovich, Debussy, Strauss, and even Gershwin to name a few.
So if you cannot take presently some vacations and need a summer break from a stressful working life, there are some great remaining concerts to attend until August 10th.
Each concert starts with a piece of Bach and correlates it with other composers work. Major concert themes include piano/keyboards, string quartet and variations, preludes and fugues, piano trio, French suites, the Art of Fugue, and the concerto for violin and oboe.
In parallel to the many concerts proposed, the festival offers a fantastic opportunity to thirty-two young musicians from ages ten to eighteen to learn from an elite artist-faculty. The creativity, enthusiasm, and passion of those young artists can be appreciated in particular during the many and free Koret Young Performers Concerts.
But at Music@Menlo – everyone can learn about music and the arts! The audience is invited to learn from the interactions between the mentors and the students at the Master Classes and through the Cafe Conversations where some distinguished guests explore a wide variety of original topics in music and arts.
In addition, the festival showcases the art of a visual artist, this year painter’s Sebastian Spreng.
I have attended many concerts over the years from Music@Menlo, and I have been impressed by many so young and so talented musicians. I have no doubt that over the classes of Music@Menlo, there will be a few ones who will carry the torch from Yo-Yo Ma, Hilary Hahn or David Barenboim!
This year, I was impressed at one of the Prelude Performances by the harmony, the energy and the elegance of Ellen Hwangbo, piano, Sujin Lee, cello, and Francesca Rose dePasquale, violin in their interpretation of Beethoven’s Piano Trio in D Major, Op.70 no.1 – so magnificently played!
It is amazing to me how those young talents can express through the intimacy of their instruments such positive feelings and subtle emotions – while they are still young adults or teenagers.
Final note, most of the festival activities occur within the beautiful campus and surroundings of Menlo College.
For the complete program of the festival, please go to www.musicatmenlo.org .
Note: The picture above is one of the Prelude Performer Concerts where Ellen Hwangbo, piano, Sujin Lee, cello, and Francesca Rose dePasquale, violin, played Beethoven’s Piano Trio in D Major.
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