Monday, March 19 , 2018, 9:41 pm | Fair 55º


Gerald Carpenter: UCSB Musicians Send Out an Early Valentine

Faculty and students unite in Sunday performance at Trinity Episcopal Church

In what is fast becoming a very enjoyable annual tradition, the faculty and students of the UCSB Music Department will present this year’s edition of “Hearts for the Arts—A Valentine Serenade” at 7 p.m. Sunday at Trinity Episcopal Church, 1500 State St. The concert is co-sponsored by the UCSB Music Affiliates and the music department, and all proceeds will benefit the Music Affiliates Student Scholarship Fund.

The radiant Jill Felber will be performing Carl Reinecke’s 'Undine' Sonata in an early Valentine’s Day concert.
The radiant Jill Felber will be performing Carl Reinecke’s “Undine” Sonata in an early Valentine’s Day concert.

Robert Koenig, head of the music department’s Collaborative Piano Program, created the romantic program with a view to having “stellar-performance students performing side by side with the university faculty artists.”

The concert features faculty pianist Paul Berkowitz performing Wolfgang Mozart’s “Fantasie in d-minor, K. 397” and “Rondo in D-Major, K. 495;” the maestro himself, cellist Geoffrey Rutkowski and pianist Natasha Kislenko playing Schumann’s “Fantasiestücke, Opus 73;” mezzo-soprano Susana Poretsky and pianist John Ballerino performing the aria “Una Voce poco Fa” from Rossini’s The Barber of Seville and the “Habanera” from Bizet’s Carmen; Kislenko playing the “Intermezzo in A-Major, Opus 118, No. 2” by Johannes Brahms and the “Four Preludes, Opus 34,” by Dmitri Shostakovich; and the superb flautist Jill Felber with Koenig in Carl Reinecke’s “Sonata for Flute and Piano (Undine), Opus 167.”

In addition to these luminaries, the evening’s entertainment will include award-winning students from the UCSB Opera Theatre Ensemble — by name, Keith Colclough, Mark Covey, Savannah Greene, Andrew Padgett, Adam Phillips, Helena von Rueden and Stephanie Turner — starring in the “Finale from Act One” of Rossini’s L’Italiana in Algeri. Ballerino will accompany on the piano.

There is a kind of inadvertent fitness in the large presence of Rossini on this program, in the light of the remarkable events taking place elsewhere around the globe. After composing William Tell, Rossini — then the most popular opera composer in the world — abruptly retired from opera composition. Some accounts suggest he had heard the work of newer composers and decided his kind of opera was finished. Whatever the reason, he decided it was time to quit and he went away gracefully, never to return. He spent the next 40 years enjoying life. What a guy. What class.

Admission to “Hearts for the Arts” is $25 for the general public, $10 for students and $50 for Patrons, which includes preferred seating and a reception after the performance (the “Sweetheart Deal” is $85 for a Patron Couple, and includes preferred seating and reception after). Tickets will be available at the door.

— Gerald Carpenter covers the arts as a Noozhawk contributor. He can be reached at .(JavaScript must be enabled to view this email address).

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