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(Posted 5:30 p.m., Feb. 1)
Young talent shines during latest GMC recital
By Fred Sherwin
Orléans Online

Sisters Maluki and Mandela Laverdure were among the 21 talented young musicians who performed during the Gloucester Music Club recital Saturday night. Fred Sherwin/Photo

The Gloucester Music Club has been holding recitals for over 10 years featuring some of the best young musicians in the city.

And with every concert there are two or three performances that stand out from the rest. On rare occasions, the program is loaded with standout performances from top to bottom. The latest Gloucester Music Club recital held on Saturday night was just such an occasion.

The first clue the evening would be something special was the opening performance by Emily Hou. whose rendition of Bach's "Prelude and Fugue in e-" was absolutely flawless.

Nine-year-old Jadon Xia had the challenging task of following Hou in the program, which he did with one of my highlights of the evening. His performance of "Barcarole" by Canadian composer David Gordon Duke, had me riveted from the first note. The subtlety and finesse with which he played was beyond his years.

The next performance was among my very favourite of the evening. Sisters Maluki and Mandela Laverdure share a love of the violin that is evident by their impeccable playing. Maluki, 7, has been playing for two and a half years, while Mandela, 10, has been playing for three and a half years.

For both sisters Saturday night's recital was their Gloucester Music Club debut. If they were nervous they didn't show it.

Maluki was the first to play, choosing the first movement of Vivaldi's "Concert in a-". It was a total treat. Mandela played a Polish dance later in the program that left me wanting more. Perhaps they'll perform a duet as an encore at a future GMC recital.

Nicolas Cooper demonstrated his prowess on the cello with a attention-grabbing performance of 18th century Spanish composer Antonio Cladara's "Sonata in D+", while Irene Grose's rendition of Haydn's piano Sonata in C+, Hob: 35 was equally magnificent.

The rest of the program featured several other outstanding performances including a pair of piano recitals by siblings Alice and Kevin Yang.

Sibling performances was a theme that ran throughout the evening's program. Emily Hou's younger brother Alexander and sister Charlotte both played exquistely, as did Jadon Xia's older brothers Jeffrey and Jeremy who brought the evening to a close with a beautiful piano duet of Johanes Brahms' "Hungarian Dance #5 and #8".

But the absolutle hightlight of the evening was provided by Dorian De Luca, 21, who is currently completeing his fourth year in the University of Ottawa's performance piano program.

De Luca's performance of Claude Debussy's "L'Ile Joyeuse" is one of the top five performances I have ever experienced at a GMC recital. In a word, it was impeccable and I felt truly privileged to be there.

The next series of Gloucester Music Club recitals will be held on March 27 and 28 at Orleans United Church.

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


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