Carol Worthey

Lyricism, Drama, Passion and Beauty

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Carol Worthey Events 2016

2016 EVENTS ARCHIVE!

"Some major events of 2016. Don't forget
 you can peruse the Event Archive for prior years
 by clicking on the links in the sidebar."

 

2016 Events Archive Table

DECEMBER
     "'Christmas by Candlelight' Concert featuring 'The Unquenchable Light' by Carol Worthey"
       ~Portland, Oregon, USA
NOVEMBER
     "The World-Premiere of 'In Awe of Rain' for Soprano, Flute & Piano"
       ~Los Angeles, California, USA
     "The World-Premiere of 'Lament' for Alto Saxophone & Piano"
       ~Carson, CA, USA
OCTOBER
     "No Turtles Were Harmed in The Making of This Soup!"
       ~Shenzhen, China
SEPTEMBER
     "A Musical Feast in a Brentwood Mansion"
       ~Brentwood, California, USA
MAY
     "Artist Tea Party—Alice-in-Wonderland-inspired Artworks by Talented Hong Kong children"
       ~Hong Kong, China
     "The Superb Unistus Chamber Choir has brought A Choral Calendar to Life At Last!"
       ~Portland, Oregon, USA
     "The Wonderful, Wacky Whimsy of Alice in Wonderland Comes to Hong Kong!"
       ~Hong Kong, China
     "May Day celebrates Springtime with A Bouquet of Music and Song!"
       ~Hollywood, California, USA
JANUARY
     "Southeast Symphony - I Could Get Used to This Expertise and Artistry"
       ~Los Angeles, California
     "NACUSA-LA-Music Alive! New Year Celebration Concert at the Ranch"
       ~Los Angeles, California
     "Happy New Year!"

Using the Events page:

To view an event, simply click on the title text from the Table of Contents below. Doing so will take you to a description of the event and associated images. Clicking on the image will present a higher resolution version, clicking again restores the original image. At the bottom right of each detailed description, you will find a "top" link that will move you to the top-of-page and a "toc" (or table-of-contents) link that will move you there. Happy viewing!

--Webmaster     
 




Concert at...
featuring the World-Premiere of Lament for Alto Saxophone & Piano

Chika Inoue , Saxophone
Mary Au , Piano

Music by Carol Worthey

 
 
 
 
 
 
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Windsong Players Chamber Ensemble and Carol Worthey
Windsong Players Chamber Ensemble and Carol Worthey
Score Title Page 'In Awe of Rain'

Windsong Players Chamber Ensemble
perform the
World-Premiere of

In Awe of Rain
for Soprano, Flute & Piano

Veronica Bell, Soprano
Alice Pero, Flute
Shushan Hakobyan, Piano
Ruben Aghiyan, Violin

Words by Alice Pero, Music by Carol Worthey

 
In Awe of Rain

If you would speak in awe of rain,
the misty dawn in breaking of day,
clouds forming in mystery

I could dissipate the smog
and tumble all the smokestacks down

If you would sing the flowers up
Your song
making rays of sunlight form
and wisps of ivy, jungles,
long hours of light,

I could whisper out
the packed-in dirt of cities,
blow away the chemicals
brought by men in pain,
fumes and smoke created there,
the distorted air

If you would speak in awe of rain.
— Alice Pero
 
 
What a resplendent concert full of jewels, Telemann , Debussy , Rachmaninoff , Bloch , Piazzolla , Khatchaturian ... and Worthey! At the world-premiere of In Awe of Rain Nature itself came through to produce a veritable deluge of rain that pounded rhythmically on the roof of the lovely church like a welcome percussion section! It was magical!
You must understand that Greater Los Angeles had been going through the saddest drought in its desert-clime history — 165 days of unrelenting parched earth — and miraculously, ever since Carol had sent her commissioned score into flutist/poet Alice Pero , LA had suddently been graced with seven different (non-consecutive) days of rain. Was this just accidental?
Carol Worthey would like to think she must have tapped into some powerful connection to the god or goddess of Rain! And so it was that at the World-Premiere of In Awe of Rain it was a downpour, a deliriously needed rainfall, a mood that brought the work alive and visceral!! Music and Magic can intersect!
To say that the poem by Alice Pero , its colors, its message, its powerful and yet subtle wordings came across to the audience is an understatement. Soprano Veronica Bell (Yulia Ronskaya) sang it with radiance and expression, Alice Pero on flute and Shushan Hakobyan on piano rendered the shades of sunlight, shadows of pollution and blessed drops of rain with lilting interweavings. The audience LOVED it!
Violinist Ruben Aghiyan also played beautifully during other pieces in this delightful concert.
Carol Worthey can still recall all the moments of this joyous jewel of a concert (in the perfect acoustics of the charming Eagle Rock Convenant Church ) and how proud she is to work with this amazing new and world-class group of musicians, Windsong Players Chamber Ensemble — don't miss any of their forthcoming concerts!
 
PROGRAM
Alice Pero, flute
Ruben Aghiyan, violin
Shushan Habokyan, piano
Sonata in C minor: Andante, Allegro
Georg Phillip Telemann
Veronica Bell, soprano
Shushan Habokyan, piano
Nuit d'etoiles
Claude Debussy
Veronica Bell, soprano
Shushan Habokyan, piano
In the Silence of the Night
Sergei Rachmaninoff
Alice Pero, flute
Shushan Habokyan, piano
Suite Modale: I. Moderato, II. L'estesso tempo, III. Allegro giocoso
Ernest Bloch
Elsa Frausto, poetEight Poems
Elsa Frausto
Ruben Aghiyan, violin
Shushan Habokyan, piano
Fracanapa
Astor Piazzolla
Carol WortheyIn Awe of Rain (Alice Pero, Poet)
WORLD PREMIERE
Veronica Bell, Soprano; Alice Pero, Flute;
Shushan Hakobyan, Piano
Ruben Aghiyan, violin
Shushan Habokyan, piano
Spartacus: Adagio
Aram Khachaturian
Shushan Habokyan, pianoSabre Dance
Aram Khachaturian
Veronica Bell, soprano
Ruben Aghiyan, violin
Alice Pero, flute
Shushan Habokyan, piano
Por Una Cabeza
Carlos Gardel
 
 
 
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Mary Au and Chika Inoue
Bialosky Concert Flyer
Score Title Page 'Lament'

NACUSA Concert at Cal State University Dominguez Hills
featuring the World-Premiere of Lament for Alto Saxophone & Piano

Chika Inoue , Saxophone
Mary Au , Piano

Music by Carol Worthey

 
 
A rich assortment of contemporary compositions at California State University Dominaguez Hills on November 16th, 2016 was played with passionate heat and warmly received by the audience there despite the freezing air-conditioning in the recital hall. Nevertheless, it was a "hot" concert for sure! Carol Worthey was excited that this was the world-premiere of her Alto Saxophone/Piano transformation of Lament originally written for Viola and Piano years earlier — Brilliant and beautiful Saxophonist Chika Inoue flowed emotionally powerful phrasing and gorgeous tone into the nostalgic "sweet sadness" of the work, and outstanding Pianist Mary Au wove iridescent harmonies around the wailing sax melodies! The audience response was rewarding. Also gracing the program (a partial list) were: Watts 1965: A Remembrance by Deon Nielsen Price , Interlude by Mark Carlson , and Cicadia Suite by Adrienne Albert of NACUSA–Los Angeles Chapter (National Association of Composers USA).
The composer has these insights to reveal about what motivated her in composing this piece: "The word 'lament' means a voicing of sadness, tied to poetry or song, not held silent within. There are many shades of sadness, stretching from all-out grief to a wistful mood akin to nostalgia. One day, after speaking to a friend going through a troublesome time, I began intoning a gentle wailing melody that became the basis for this work. Lament expresses a sweet and reflective sadness like the tender yearning one feels when recalling a lost love. Listen as this wordless song builds in intensity, culminating in soaring high notes. Subtle harmonic weaving in the piano ends in a very low note that I the composer harken to a shudder of recognition."
Conceived originally for viola and piano, Lament was premiered in November 2009 by Grammy-nominated artists, Violist Karen Elaine and Pianist Nadia Shpachenko at Cal Poly Pomona. In March 2010 Pianist Mary Au and Coloratura Arietha Lockhart performed Vocalise: Lament at Faces of Eve Concert in Manhattan. Carol Worthey was inspired from the first moment she heard the remarkable duo—Saxophonist Chika Inoue and Pianist Mary Au — and feels honored that they asked her to transform Lament into a work for alto sax and piano. She believes this version will have a long life of its own and bring solace and peace to all who have experienced sorrow in their days.
 
 
 
 
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Alice Concert Shenzhen - Audience
Alice Concert Shenzhen - Poster
Alice Concert Shenzhen - Mock Turtle Soup
Alice Concert Shenzhen - Stanley Wong and narrators
Alice Concert Shenzhen - Mock Turtle Soup
Alice Concert Shenzhen - Stanley Wong at toy piano

Alice Keys to Wonderland
Music-Art-Fusion Concerts
featuring
"Recipe for Mock Turtle Soup"
by Carol Worthey
Shenzhen, China (near Hong Kong)

October 14 - 16, 2016

Music by Carol Worthey

 
Stanley Wong , Pianist and originator of the Alice Keys to Wonderland Concert Series and Art Exhibit, sponsored the creation of new music by fourteen renowned international composers, pieces each inspired by a particular chapter in the classic book Alice in Wonderland. This imaginative concept was conceived in honor of the 150th Anniversary of the captivating book.
Carol Worthey 's piece Recipe for Mock Turtle Soup: A Four-Ingredient Piece was born out of the droll and touching Chapter 9 when Alice meets the Mock Turtle who can't stop weeping. This was the chapter that Stanley Wong assigned to Carol. Knowing how this wonderful pianist and mentor cares about inspiring and involving young talents (both in music and art), Carol Worthey imagined a work that incorporates a Children's Choir, a Narrator and Pianist who go through each "ingredient" celebrating water (H 2 O), carrots and onions, "mock turtle" (which turns out to be eggplant cut in cubes — no turtles were harmed in the making of this soup or composition!) and the "secret ingredient" (love). Carol created the lyrics, the piano music, the narrated portions and the choral part, using elements of humor, rhyme and a flavor of Lewis Carroll's piquant flights of imagination into the very heart of childhood.
All fourteen works were first premiered in Hong Kong in May 2016 — accompanied by a Young Artist Competition ( Carol Worthey was one of four international Art Judges and the works were truly extraordinary) and an Art Exhibit and splendid Tea Party. The Children's Choir featured at the premiere was from Hong Kong's Music Children's Foundation, which assists to bring music skills and hope to disadvantaged children in the Hong Kong area. The children singers were delightful, the narrator Sarah Martin excellent, and Stanley Wong told Carol Worthey her piece was hugely well-received by all at the premier. The art-music fusion of the event featured slides shown on large screen during the music presentation or by original art works by young and mature artists featured on stage or in the lobby. The separate Art Exhibit and Tea Party also contributed to the excitement generated by this event. Carol herself created an art cover for the score of Recipe for Mock Turtle Soup.
Following the Hong Kong world premiere, Alice was taken by Stanley Wong to Taipei Taiwan in July 2016. Again, the 14 new Alice works, and in particular the performance by the Taipei Children's Choir and narrator, received rousing ovations!
Now in October 2016 — from October 14th to the 16th — Stanley Wong again brought the Alice Keys to Wonderland concept to Shenzhen, China in three concerts which touched the lives of several thousand audience members and performers. (Shenzhen is a city near Hong Kong which is a renowned cultural center.)
Carol Worthey is thrilled to find out that once again Recipe for Mock Turtle Soup was greeted with cheers, ovation and delight!! Along with Pianist Stanley Wong, the Narrator was "Rainbow" and the children's chorus from Shenzhen featured members of the Shija Children's Choir. The adorable children were dressed in their finest outfits and very poised on stage.
Here you see photos of the October 16th concert in front of a full house of families, adorable children and music lovers! This kind of international People-to-People Connection-through-Music (especially involving children, our future) makes Carol very, very happy! Carol wishes to thank Stanley Wong , the narrator and all the amazing child singers and artists involved in bringing Alice to life!
 
 
 
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Windsong Players Chamber Ensemble
Carol Worthey (accepting applause)
I Will Build A House Cover

Windsong Players Chamber Ensemble
Afternoon Concert Featuring
"I Will Build A House"
(for Soprano, Flute and Guitar)

Yulia Ronskaya, Soprano
Alice Pero, Flute
Shushan Hakobyan, Piano
Vincent Reyes, Guitar

Music by Carol Worthey
Words by S. A. DeWitt

 
 
An exquisite feast of music superbly performed with utmost feeling and artistry by Windsong Players Chamber Ensemble. I am thrilled and honored that my setting of I Will Build A House (a beautiful poem by Alice Pero 's grandfather S. A. DeWitt ) for Soprano ( Veronica Bell [ Yulia Ronskaya ], center), Flute ( Alice Pero ) and Guiltar ( Vincent Reyes, left) was part of this world-class concert experience.  Shushan Hakobyan  (piano, in blue) and  Ruben Aghiyan (Composer/Violinist, right) helped make this whole afternoon one of the most well-programmed and gorgeous concerts I can recall, Schubert, Poulenc, Gluck, Villa Lobos and Piazolla! Carol Worthey loves being in such phenomenal company! This is truly a chamber ensemble that is World-Class!
 
PROGRAM
Lois P. JonesHer Poem Big Tujunga
with accompaniment by Alice Pero, flute
Alice Pero, flute
Shushan Habokyan, piano
Sonata
Francis Polenc
Shushan HabokyanMeditation
Ruben Aghiyan
Carol WortheyI Will Build A House (S. A. DeWitt, Poet)
Veronica Bell, Soprano; Alice Pero, Flute;
Vincent Reyes, Guitar (Second Performance)
Veronica Bell
Alice Pero
Shushan Habokyan
Der Hirt auf dem felsen
(The Shepherd on the Rock)
Franz Schubert
Alice Pero
Shushan Habokyan
Lament from Orfeo
Christoph von Gluck
Veronica Bell
Vincent Reyes
Bachianas Brasilerias No. 5
Hector Villa-Lobos
Ruben Aghiyan, violin
Shushan Habokyan, piano
Libertango
Astor Piazzolla
 
 
 
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ArtSky Studio
Some (7-9 year olds) Art Contest entries

Artist Tea Party
Alice-in-Wonderland-inspired Artworks
by Talented Hong Kong children
Celebrating the 150th Anniversary of Lewis Carroll's classic book

Stanley Wong, Sponsor

Carol Worthey, Honorable Judge

 

Sha Tin New Town, Hong Kong
www.ArtSkyStudio.com.hk

 
 
Featured the announcement of the Intermediate and Young Artist Competition Winners in the Alice in Wonderland Art Competition celebrating the 150th anniversary of that classic book. Carol Worthey was one of 4 Honorary Art Judges!
You can see a composite of some of the beautiful entries in the picture, clicking on it will enlarge the picture for easier viewing!
 
 
 
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Unistus Chamber Choir
A Choral Calendar, Twelve Portraits of The Months

A Choral Calendar
Twelve Portraits of The Months
for SATB a cappella Choir World Premiere

Unistus Chamber Choir
Lonnie Cline, Music Director & Conductor

Words & Music by Carol Worthey

 
 
The superb Unistus Chamber Choir has brought A Choral Calendar to Life At Last, under the direction of Celebrated Conductor & Artistic Director Lonnie Cline in two Portland Area concerts at the First Christian Church, 1314 S. W. Park Avenue, Portland OR (May 20th, 2016) and Milwaukie Lutheran Church, 3810 S. E. Lake Road, Wilwaukie, OR (May 22nd, 2016).
As composer Carol Worthey describes it, "These concerts world-premiering A Choral Calendar form a glow in my life that is unforgettable — definitely one of the highlights of my life! The world-premiere of this major work was long in coming but totally a rapturous delight! You see, I wrote the poems (celebrating the wonders, ironies and seasonal aspects of each month) in one feverish day of creativity, and months later I decided to set them for choir in a wide variety of styles and moods, each month different, in textures and musical colors quite challenging. As I composed it, I designed it for a superb choir that had premiered a work by me a few years earlier. I exuberantly added watercolor portraits of each month to the score cover — I call these 'Iconic Portraits.' "
"But no sooner had I completed the music and artwork then the choir slated to perform the work ended up folding due to financial troubles. My search for just the right choir and director to take on this major work took nearly six years but fortunately brought me to the attention of a choir director respected throughout the world, Lonnie Cline. I'm very grateful to composer and friend Ron Jones (Star Trek, Family Guy) for personally taking the score to Maestro Cline. (Ron went to jazz/arranging school with me and believes in me.) Happily, Lonnie Cline immediately understood the subtleties and potential of A Choral Calendar. I was amazed when he called me and said, "I really understand how you created the overall design as it moves through various tonalities and emotions. I love this! My Unistus Chamber Choir is up for the challenge and is a really top-notch choir, so... we'll DO IT!!" All in all, it took nearly six years to find exactly the right choir but the wait was worth it!"
Carol continues, "Although I didn't want to take any attention off the Choir as they performed the work, Lonnie insisted I be part of the concert and read each month's poem for the audience right before the choir performed each piece. This turned out to be a brilliant idea because at the Dress Rehearsal, hearing me read the poems, the Choir's comprehension of the text soared and they felt ready to really communicate to the audience — audience members at the two concerts also told me that the poems came alive for them when I read them. So I won't be reluctant to read for an audience in the future — thank you, Lonnie! Now I LOVE reading my poems to an audience."
"Wow! How do I describe in adequate words these two concerts? (You'll just have to hear the recording... which I expect to receive any day now and will post here.) The two beautiful churches seemed all aglow when the Choir sang. Lonnie Cline 's direction was brilliant, impassioned, technically and artistically superb! The Unistus Chamber Choir brought out nuances in perfect intonation and balance. They projected the meaning and power of each month's portrait with delicious sonorities that gave me waves of goosebumps! I will never forget the audience reaction: They seemed to come alive! The ovations were instantaneous and long. It was such a thrill to hear the music after six years and such an honor to hear the comments from both seasoned musicians and audience members! Definitely one of the highlights of my entire life!! Thank you Unistus and Maestro Cline and all the supportive people in the Portland Oregon area who welcomed me so warmly!! I also want to thank Lonnie and his devoted helpmeet, Micki Cline, for their great hospitality throughout our trip. Each and every member of Unistus is now a friend. Thank you all!"
Here it is! You can Listen to the Premiere Performance of A Choral Calendar by clicking the 'Play' buttons below. Enjoy! /Webmaster
 

  JANUARY - A Choral Calendar (Unistus Choir, Premiere, Lonnie Cline, Director)
download

 

  FEBRUARY - A Choral Calendar (Unistus Choir, Premiere, Lonnie Cline, Director)
download

 

  MARCH - A Choral Calendar (Unistus Choir, Premiere, Lonnie Cline, Director)
download

 

  APRIL - A Choral Calendar (Unistus Choir, Premiere, Lonnie Cline, Director)
download

 

  MAY - A Choral Calendar (Unistus Choir, Premiere, Lonnie Cline, Director)
download

 

  JUNE - A Choral Calendar (Unistus Choir, Premiere, Lonnie Cline, Director)
download

 

  JULY - A Choral Calendar (Unistus Choir, Premiere, Lonnie Cline, Director)
download

 

  AUGUST - A Choral Calendar (Unistus Choir, Premiere, Lonnie Cline, Director)
download

 

  SEPTEMBER - A Choral Calendar (Unistus Choir, Premiere, Lonnie Cline, Director)
download

 

  OCTOBER - A Choral Calendar (Unistus Choir, Premiere, Lonnie Cline, Director)
download

 

  NOVEMBER - A Choral Calendar (Unistus Choir, Premiere, Lonnie Cline, Director)
download

 

  DECEMBER - A Choral Calendar (Unistus Choir, Premiere, Lonnie Cline, Director)
download

 
Unistus Chamber Choir: www.Facebook.com/Unistus
 
 
 
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Sheung Wan Civic Centre Theatre
Recipe for Mock Turtle Soup Cover
Sarah Martin, Narrator
Stanley Wong interviews Art winner

Alice in Wonderland
Concert & Celebration
An Art & Music Extravaganza

Celebrating the 150th Anniversary of Lewis Carroll's classic book

World-Premiere of 'Recipe for Mock Turtle Soup: A Four-Ingredient Piece' by composer Carol Worthey
(for Children's Chorus, Narrator and Solo Piano)


Stanley Wong, Piano
Sarah Martin, Narrator

Music by Carol Worthey

 

Sheung Wan Civic Center Theatre
Shen Wan, Hong Kong
上環文娛中心演講廳

 
Works by 14 international and renowned composers, each based on a different chapter of the book Alice in Wonderland in honor of the 150th anniversary of this classic book made the concert a unique and exciting event. A special delight for the composer was that her idea to incorporate songs to be sung by a children's choir — this concept ended up utilizing the talents of children from Music Children Foundation in Hong Kong. This foundation brings the joy-of-music-making and the strong-lifelong-purpose-to-follow-their-dreams to children from underprivileged areas! The adorable choir did a wonderful job singing the Turtle Song which is part of Carol Worthey 's Recipe.
Recipe for Mock Turtle Soup for piano, children chorus & narrator (2016) creatively composed by Carol Worthey.
Beautiful performance of Children Choir from Music Children Foundation 音樂兒童基金會
Wonderful narration by Sarah Martin.

Lyrics:
Turtles walk slowly.
They're shy and cute... and holy!
Turtles waddle back and forth,
Going East and West and South and North.
They've too much pride inside their hide
To want to slip and slosh and slide
Inside a bowl of SOUP!
So Eggplant serves them very well,
Cut in cubes that tend to swell.
[Narrator: And there's no shell]
It tastes like Turtle, so turtles tell —
And Eggplant is their Hero!
 
 
Carol Worthey was definitely in good company with works by Judith Lang Zaimont , Boris Kozak , Vivian Adelberg Rudow , Erik Grisworld , Julie Kuok , Yi-De-Chen , Jules Pegram , Valerie Ettenauer , Jorge Torres Saenz , Karen Tanaka , Polina Nazaykinskaya , Kay He and Angelica Negron . Highlighting the remarkable talents of young artists (from 5 to 14 years of age) in the Hong Kong area, slides were shown during the concert and art was displayed at the concert venue. These truly imaginative and beautiful works were entries in the Young Artist Competition. (Carol was one of 4 Honorary Art Judges from various countries — and was bowled over by the talent and creativity of these young artists!)
 
 
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Yulia Ronskaya - soprano, Alice Pero - flutist and Vincent Reyes - guitar
I Will Build A House Cover
Performers and Composer

Windsong Players Chamber Ensemble
World-Premiere of
"I Will Build A House"
(for Soprano, Flute and Guitar)

Yulia Ronskaya, Soprano
Alice Pero, Flute
Shushan Hakobyan, Piano
Vincent Reyes, Guitar

Music by Carol Worthey
Words by S. A. DeWitt

 
I Will Build A House
Out of laughter,
Out of love and song,
And stuff that is humble.
My house will rise
And last long,
Long after
The granite palaces tumble.
I will build a house
Out of song,
Without doors, without bars,
With walls as strong
As winds are strong,
And a roof of black shingles
Nailed with stars.
— S. A. DeWitt, published 1922
 
A full house listened in awe and rapture as one beautiful work after the other was performed to the highest standards. The Garden Pavilion in Hollywood, overlooking waterfalls and flowers, seemed the perfect setting to welcome May Day!
The rich, expressive voice of soprano Yulia Ronskaya, the lyrical sweetness of Alice Pero 's flute-playing and Vincent Reyes ' sensitive renderings on guitar joined together to really communicate the poem I Will Build A House (a profound and moving poem by Alice's grandfather S. A. DeWitt) that Carol Worthey set to a flowing melody and interweaving harmonies. Ms. Pero commissioned the work.
A proud moment indeed as the composer joined the performers for a bow.
The entire concert was radiant and one of the best concerts Carol Worthey has heard in recent years. An auspicious new beginning for this delightful group, Windsong Players Chamber Ensemble and for a May that is absolutely unparalleled for the composer Worthey.
The concert also featured works by Arutiunian , Saint-Saens and Poulenc performed by the Windsong Players Chamber Ensemble including Shushan Hakobyan , Outstanding Pianist
You can watch a video of the premiere performance below:
 
 
 
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Maestro Anthony Parnther, Southeast Symphony

I Could Get Used to This Expertise and Artistry

Southeast Symphony
Thursday,
January 14th, 2016

A review by Carol Worthey

 
Went to an absolutely stupendous concert tonight!!! Southeast Symphony's masterful conductor/music director Anthony R. Parnther (who didn't miss a cue with some of the best conducting I've ever seen — and I mean this! and I've seen Bernstein, Munch, Dudamel and Szell among others) is completely at one with the music, on top of everything, precise but so expressive in a work that is breathtakingly difficult every step of the way. Honestly, now I know why Parnther's charisma is so genuine — he's the Real Deal. What's all the fuss about? Wynton Marsalis' "Fiddler's Tale" with brilliant Alyssa Park , Violin, outstanding narrator Nic Few , and six other amazing instrumentalists the likes of which could perform in any top concert hall in the world. By rights I should name them all. Okay, here goes: Jonathan Sacdalan , Clarinet, Alex Rosales Garcia , Bassoon, Aaron Smith , Cornet, Daniel Lawlor , Trombone, Sidney Hopson , Percussion, Jonathan Richards , Bass --- everyone so good they're scary. The music fuses recollections of Stravinsky's "Soldier's Tale" (which Marsalis has brought up to date) with touches of Darius Milhaud and Piazolla, contrapuntal mixes of ragtime, blues, bebop, big band, country fiddle, bluegrass and Webern atonality at times — it's rhythmically and harmonically a scintillating stewpot of classical and jazz that works to tell a tale of lost artistry, temptation and (possibly) redemption. Ultimately, "Fiddler's Tale" ends up whimsical, tongue in cheek, not taking itself too seriously while charming the audience with hints at higher (or lower as in "devilish") soul-searching. The storyline also has relevance to musicians everywhere who strive to keep their artistic ntegrity but may be lured into selling out for fame and fortune by money-grubbing music industry "peddlers to the public". Maybe Marsalis has fought that battle himself, but I'd wager he's won. I don't know who the writer is (might be Marsalis, not sure) but the Narrator Nic Few was riveting, bowled-over with vibrant distinctions of 3 characters. If I could say only one thing I could have wanted in Marsalis' vision, it might have had a bit more lyricism at times in the violin part, which pretty much stuck to its role as "Fiddler." That aside, Ms. Park was athletically and aesthetically ready for all the runs and twists and turns in her part — it's a great violin "role", so forget my occasional longing for a bit more violin-emoting and vibrato (read, lyricism). The audience rose in a full-house standing ovation. I honestly experienced one of the best concerts of recent years. Southeast Symphony delivers — their next concert will be February 14th, 2016 "An American Legacy" — and on May 22nd, I honestly wish I could be in two places at once because Southeast takes on "Carmina Burana" with a huge chorus and orchestra and soloists including great Darryl Taylor .... but I'll be up in Oregon experiencing a huge world-premiere of my "A Choral Calendar" with superb Unistus Chamber Choir , under direction of Lonnie Cline . I could get used to this kind of EXPERTISE and ARTISTRY!!
Thursday, January 14th, 2016
after a concert at Shatto Chapel at
First Congregational Church
540 S. Commonwealth Avenue
Los Angeles, CA
 
See also: www.SoutheastSymphony.com
 
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Carol Worthey / Alice Pero

How to Start The Year Off Right!

NACUSA-LA-Music Alive!
New Year Celebration Concert at the Ranch
Saturday,
January 9th, 2016

 
You know when you have an audience bowled over: People's eyes grow as big as their smiles, some guests pull out their checkbook to make voluntary contributions they are so impressed, there's a certain electric pleasure in the air and the audience never coughs once! That was the case at this concert of top professional performers and a delightfully wide variety of home-grown (Los Angeles-produced) compositions ranging from contemporary classical (from passionate Cuban to charming fairy-tale miniatures to stunning saxophone or vocalist and beyond) to ethnic fusion to elegant jazz. To set the event off with style and grace, renowned poet Alice Pero read three charming poems from her chapbook "Thawed Stars." Alice is also a gifted flutist as you will see.
One of the pleasures of a composer is not simply to have a work world-premiered with panache, but to see it have a "life", to get multiple performances, well-performed and well-received. That was the case when poet/flutist Alice Pero (who commissioned the work) rendered the second performance of "Quatrain" for Solo Flute. This piece has a distinctive Japanese, and evocative, meditational feel rather unique in Carol Worthey 's repertoire. In essence, it is similar to a haiku in that each melodic fragment is like a well-chosen word that leads to piquant "word-phrases," Built in four short movements (from which the title "Quatrain" [meaning "four stanza poem"] is taken) the middle two movements take the simplicity and haunting quality of the first movement and move into very virtuosic runs, elaborating the potential of the melody. The final "verse" (movement) returns to the meditational mood of the beginning but ends in a long reverberating note... as if the piece really wasn't ending. Alice really brought out all these moods.
Each work on the program was a refreshing change from the one before until the entire program was rounded out with a lovely potluck reception. NACUSA-LA has new life in that Grammy-winning composer and guitarist/pianist Yalil Guerra has taken on the post of Chapter President — the new staff was introduced by our always congenial hostess (a past President of NACUSA and a great composer and friend) Deon Nielsen Price. Her home is so welcoming. May I say in total sincerity that this is one of the best music-salon concerts I've ever been to or participated in!! Here is the lineup of composers and performers, each selection really extraordinary!
PROGRAM
Alice PeroThree Poems from Thawed Stars
Yalil GuerraAmor (Love)
Amanda Squitieri (voice), Bryan Pezzone (piano)
Deon Nielsen PriceWatts 1965: A Remembrance
Barricades—Curfew—Aftermath
Chika Inoue (soprano & alto saxophonist), Mary Au (piano)
Matthew HetzSonata for Unaccompanied Cello
Maksim Velichkin (cello)
Adrienne AlbertClimate Change
Temperature Rising-Ice Melting-Windmills
Chika Inoue (saxophonist), Mary Au (piano)
Carol WortheyQuatrain for Solo Flute
Alice Pero (flute)
Daniel RobbinsPastorale
The Prince and the Princess
Composer (piano)
Philip James Gilberti Lonely Faith
Composer (piano)
Richard DerbyIsolation
Mary Palchak (flute)
Igor KoganSong Without Words
Vocalise #1
Trio: Amy K. Bormet (voice, piano), Konstantine Jemel (trumpet, flugelhorn), Igor Kogan (bass)
What a great way to start the year off in STYLE and ENERGY and INSPIRATION!!
 
See also: www.Music-USA.org/nacusa-la
 
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Happy New Year!

Wishing you all a very Happy New Year!

 
 
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