Friday, May 25 , 2018, 12:18 pm | Partly Cloudy 64º

 
 
 
 

Marilyn Horne Instructs; Christopher Taylor Demonstrates

Music Academy of the West offers weekend masterclass and a master performance

Marilyn Horne, mezzo-soprano and Music Academy of the West legend, will conduct a special vocal masterclass at the Lobero Theatre on Saturday with the collaboration of the academy’s 2009 Voice Fellows (students). The class begins at 3 p.m.

Edgard Varèse battles Olivier Messiaen to a draw at the Lobero
Edgard Varèse battles Olivier Messiaen to a draw at the Lobero “Wild Man of Music” throw down.

Working with the young vocalists, Horne will demonstrate, as only she can, how a singer can “fit notes and words together in ways that will take an audience straight to the expressive core of a song.”

Tickets to this special masterclass are $30, and can be purchased from the Lobero box office, 33 E. Canon Perdido, or by phone at 805.963.0761. Click here to purchase tickets online or call the academy hotline at 805.969.8787.

At 7:30 p.m. Sunday, also in the Lobero, conductor Larry Rachleff will lead first an ensemble of Wind, Brass and Percussion Fellows, then the Academy Chamber Orchestra in a “Visiting Artists Concert” starring pianist Christopher Taylor. The program will consist of three works: Olivier Messiaen’s “Oiseaux exotiques (Exotic Birds),” Edgard Varèse’s Intégrales, and Wolfgang Amadeus Mozart’s “Concerto for Piano and Orchestra No. 21 in C Major, K. 467” (“Elvira Madigan”). Taylor will solo in the Messiaen and Mozart.

No composer, as Richard Freed noted, “has been as productively bird-conscious as Messiaen, nearly all of whose compositions over a period of some 50 years or more either cite bird calls outright or contain some form of avian symbolism. This element, in fact, only grew more emphatic as his creative life continued, until most of his works came to be constructed entirely of motifs derived from bird calls.” Freed goes on hastily to caution listeners against anticipating a kind of musical Audubon album. Messiaen was made of much sterner stuff. Academy audiences may find themselves in the embarrassing position of preferring Varèse’s “Intégrales,” which, though just as odd, has a unity and flow that the austerely jittery Messiaen lacks. In any event, things will come together beautifully with the Mozart concerto. They always do.

Tickets to this Visiting Artists Concert are $45, and can be purchased from the Lobero box office, 33 E. Canon Perdido, or by phone at 805.963.0761. Click here to purchase tickets online or call the academy hotline at 805.969.8787.

— Gerald Carpenter covers the arts as a Noozhawk contributor.

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