Volume 10 Week 10

Sunday, Dec. 14


 

Updated March 2


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Orléans Ward
Bob Monette

 

 

 

 



(Posted 6:30 a.m., March 28)

Young musicians use GMC recital to prep for Kiwanis Music Festival
By Fred Sherwin
Orleans Online

Lindsay White performs "Cruella de Vil" during the Gloucester Music Club recital at the Orleans Client Service Centre on Friday night accompanied on piano by Mimi Lam. Fred Sherwin/photo


For the past six years the Gloucester Music Teachers Association has been organizing a series of recitals at the Orleans Client Service Centre theatre to give their students and other budding musicians a chance to play in front of a live audience.

For many of the kids, some of whom are as young as six and seven years of age, the Gloucester Music Club recitals play an important role in building up their confidence. The recitals are doubly important at this time of year when many of the young performers are preparing for the annual Kiwanis Music Festival which takes place every spring in over a dozen venues across the city.

The interest in the Festival is evident by the fact that over 60 youngsters applied to play in this weekend's Gloucester Music Club recitals, the first of which was held Friday night.

The lineup of 32 performers featured some familiar names as well as 10 newcomers who were performing on the Orleans Theatre stage for the first time.

On of the newbies was Erica Bergado from Orléans who performed "Fantasy Bossa" by Christopher Norton. Listening to her play the bossa nova piece with an incredible delicateness that belied her 13 years, it was had to believe that she was trembling with nervousness before settling in behind the piano.

"I was a little scared. It was my first time playing in front of an audience that paid to be there so I was pretty nervous," said Bergado who will be playing the Grade 7 piece at the Kiwanis Music Festival despite the fact that she has only completed her Grade 5 Royal Conservatory of Music exam and she'll be competing at the Music Festival for the first time. "I hope I'll do well."

Friday night's recital was kicked off by an impressive performance by seven-year-old Kevin Yang, who performed a lengthy and near flawless rendition of Clementi's "Sonatina in C+ Op. 36 No. 3".

While Yang had one or two bobbles during his performance, he more than made up for the miscues with moments of sheer brilliance. Like Bergado, Yang will also be competing at the Kiwanis Music Festival.

His mother Tong Jing says Kevin has been practicing about two hours a day in preparation for his recital and the upcoming music festival. When he's not preparing for his live performances or practicing for his Grade 5 RCM exam which he will be taking this summer, young Master Yang will often flip through a Grade 8 or 9 song book in search of a challenge.

There were a number of highlights during the Friday night recital, including a vocal performance by Lindsay White who was accompanied on piano by Gloucester Music Club veteran and multiple Kiwanis Music Festival award recipient Mimi Lam.

White's spirited and campy rendition of "Cruella de Vil" was a real treat. After performing in the "Pop Music" and "Musical Theatre" categories at last year's Kiwanis Music Festival in which she finished first in her class, the 12-year-old vocalist plans to stick to "Musical Theatre" this year with the hope of earning an invitation to sing in the Highlights Concert on May 15.

Judging by her performance of Mozart's "Sonatina in C K309 3rd Mvt." on Friday night, Naomi Ng should also impress the adjudicators at this year's Music Festival.

The third movement of Mozart's Sonatina is a challenging piece on its own, but when coupled with the second movement which Ng plans to perform at the Music Festival, it's even more so, especially when you consider that Ng has to perform the piece completely by memory.

"I find if I play the piece one note at a time, it's a lot easier than trying to think about the entire thing," said Ng after wowing the audience with her incredible dexterity and musicality.

What made Ng's performance even more amazing is that fact that she doesn't have a regular practice regimen. The gifted student has a heavy study load and she's also active in drama.

"I sort of practice whenever I can find the time," said Ng.

Among the many other highlights on Friday night was Felix Lu's performance of "Milonga del angel" by Argentine composer Astor Piazzolla; Aris Penny's beautiful rendition of "Totems" by Edwin McLean; Grace Tang's performance of "Fantasia in C+" by Telemann; Vanessa Tanner's rendition of "Romance" by Reinhold Glière; and Amy Li's performance of Clementi's "Sonatina in G+ Op. 36 No 2" which made the perfect bookend to Kevin Yang's performance.

Among the other performers on the program were Trisha Kandiah, Nicolas Cosenza, Jacqueline Chau, Michael Mofina, Tiffany Hnatiw, Eric Kingsbury, Robyn Moke, Lauren Kingsbury, Isabelle Filion, Sebastien Roy, Michelle Song, Joshua Kandiah, Pamela Ng, Oliver Ng, Philip Chau, Charles Li, Alexandre Cosenza, Jonathan Kandiah and Julia Lemieux. Isabelle Desjardins and Gabrielle Monette also performed on the recorder.

A second recital featuring 31 other young performers will be held at trhe Orleans Client Service Centre theatre on Sunday night starting at 7:30 p.m. Tickets are $4 per person or $10 for a family of four.

(This story was made possible thanks to the generous support of our local business partners.)

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