On Saturday Nov. 19, the Keene State College Music Department hosted an ensemble recital in the Redfern Arts Center’s Alumni Recital Hall. Here, music majors of every year conglomerated to perform various songs, ranging in genres from baroque music, from Johann Sebastian Bach’s “Allein Gott in der Höh sei Ehr,” for example, to contemporary pieces like Leonard Bernstein’s “Overture to Candide.”
The Clarinet Choir, ‘Currants’ Contemporary Ensemble, Flute Ensemble and Woodwind Quintet, alternated and played for almost two hours. The audience of about 50 people listened to the 14 songs performed, in no particular order, by each musical group. Although the program ran long, there were breaks between each piece to give time for break-down and set-up for the following musical number.
The afternoon began with three Giuseppe Maria Cambini songs performed by the Woodwind Quintet.
One of the members of the Woodwind Quintet, junior music performance and chemistry major Angelica Monroe, spoke on her performance and said, “I think I did as good as I could for the limited time that we had to prepare…because most of the ensembles that meet, meet once a week and it’s really hard to put together pieces with multiple people if you’re only meeting once a week.”
Like a majority of the members of the Woodwind Quintet, Monroe is a part of second ensemble.
After a slow and quiet opening, Theresa Barnes sang the first and fifth poems of Emily Dickinson, while Andrew Brace played the guitar.
While a multitude of the songs were played by the entirety of the ensemble, there were three musical numbers performed by small, chamber groups, such as Barnes and Brace. They were sporadically placed throughout the concert.
As the day continued, the songs changed in intensity. Some musical numbers, such as “Beneath the Canopy,” contained a mix of percussion and wind instruments.
The concert concluded with a performance from the ‘Currants’ Contemporary Ensemble, a group that included a mixture of musicians from all other performing ensembles.
Two audience members, KSC juniors Bethany Griffin and Olivia Miller, both attended the concert to watch their friend.
“I came to support my friend Sarah Keith. She is a senior and I know that she’s always loved flute. I asked her what she was doing today and she said she was performing, so Bethany and I came along to support her,” said Miller.
Griffin, an elementary education and psychology major, commented, “It was very interesting for me to see. I played the flute in high school and middle school, so I haven’t done anything with it since I’ve been in college. It’s kind of cool to see it happen again and see the difference in the way they presented it in contraction with each other.”
Aforementioned, the number of attendees was rather small.
“[The turnout was] a little less [than normal], but in November it’s hard because there’s a lot going on campus-wide…and it was good, less-than-normal I would say…but in general for a Saturday afternoon, I think it’s okay,” commented Christopher Swist, director of the ‘Currants’ Contemporary Ensemble.
The next events hosted by the Music Department will be the Percussion Ensemble on Thursday, Dec. 1 and Jazz Combos on Friday, Dec. 2.
Alex Saurman can be contacted at email@example.com
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