A crowd of men and women of all ages, from the very little to the elderly, gathered in Martin Chapel Sunday afternoon, April 1, for a recital of EMU’s Preparatory Music Program.
The recital featured program instructors Maria Lorcas on violin and Kathleen Overfield-Zook on viola.
Joining them on piano and harpsichord were Lynne Mackey, who is Associate Professor of Piano at EMU, and Amy Robertson, who is a local freelance accompanist and a private instructor.
The first selection, exhibiting Lorcas on violin and Mackey on harpsichord, composed by Johann Sebastian Bach, was Sonata in A Major (BWV 1015). Lorcas and Mackey played all four movements of the composition from the Baroque period. Next, Overfield-Zook and Robertson exhibited a selection from the Romantic period composed by Johannes Brahms.
The Sonata in E-Flat Major (Op. 120), which they played on viola and piano, was written at the end of his career, incidentally after he had already declared retirement, and was the last piece Brahms wrote before his death in 1897.
This sonata is one of two pieces originally inspired by the performance of Richard Mühlfeld on clarinet at an arts festival. Brahms heard his solos in Weber’s Clarinet Concerto and Mozart’s Clarinet Quintet and was inspired to come out of retirement to compose another piece for clarinet, after only a year hiatus.
Upon completion, Brahms also transcribed and altered his composition for a viola.
Overfield-Zook and Robertson passionately played all three movements from this viola composition.
Afterwards, Overfield-Zook joined Lorcas and Mackey for a selection from a Classical concerto by Wolfgang Amadeus Mozart. The selection they performed, Allegro maestoso, is the first movement of Mozart’s Symphonie Concertante in E-flat Major (K. 364).
But the recital was not all seriousness, as Lorcas and Overfield-Zook displayed some “springtime frivolity” as well. They decided to mix things up for their last selection.
Overfield-Zook grabbed a French horn and Lorcas picked up a flute. Mackey started playing the composition, and right when it was time for Overfield-Zook and Lorcas to come in they smiled and screamed, “April fools!”
The crowd chuckled and gave applause to the gag. After returning to the violin and viola, Overfield-Zook and Lorcas played the final composition by Uruguayan composer Gerardo Matos Rodriguez. La Cumparsita was the first composition by Rodriguez written while he was an architecture student in Montevideo in 1916. Although this selection is much shorter than their previous ones, La Cumparsita is nevertheless considered to be one of the most famous tangos of all time.
“The variety of music performed was wonderful,” said Junior Amanda Grace Lewis. “I appreciate that the music department offers opportunities for music instructors to perform. It is always inspiring and enjoyable to hear their performances.”
After the recital, a reception included drinks and various snacks. Donations benefited the EMU Preparatory Music Program Scholarship Fund.