Grand County experienced only one day of hazy conditions due to the state forest fires throughout the state. The final concert of the Grand County Concert Series cleared the air in numerous ways. Many conversations at the concert and the following days were not about the flames and devastation but about this musical event featuring unusual instruments.
"This authentic organic sound and its emphasis on expressing the range of human emotion, speaks directly to our time. We are not about recreating music of the past for its own sake, but rather bringing it alive for 21st century audiences," said Frank Nowell, founder, artistic director and harpsichordist of the Baroque Chamber Orchestra of Colorado.
He performed on an 8-foot instrument from the 1500s. The harpsichord is unlike the piano in that the strings are plucked rather than struck and it has no pedals to provide dynamics yet the sound is very satisfying as a solo instrument as well as an ensemble. Expression is possible though articulation, timing and interpretation.
Also performing were two violinists, one playing a Baroque instrument with unusual features with a fine, plaintive sound. Stacey Brady and Mary Harrison used no vibrato and had the talent to play together in perfect pitch and timbre giving the audience a distinct sound to their playing.
Bassoonist, Patricia Fagan-Miller, played hundreds of notes on her ancient bassoon, which had only eight keys compared to a modern bassoon that has 22 plus alternate keys for ease. She was very impressive with her agility and tone. Linda Lunback played several recorders for various selections with little effort but anyone familiar with this instrument knows how difficult her music was with only open holes for her sound. Children in our local elementary schools received an education on music, notation and theory on simple recorders. This concert was a prime example of the perfection of a professional with years of practice not only as a soloist but as an ensemble musician.
The musicians played Telemann, Handel, Marias and other early composers with a balanced ensemble. Stacy Brady, violinist, felt she had shared her peace and joy with all of us. At the reception Linda Lunbeck told the attendees it was a delight to share the music we love with an appreciative music audience.
"Every voice was discernible and presented a pure sound," said concert-goer, Heinz Engel.
Judy Baxter, spokesperson for the Concert Series, announced the program for the 10th anniversary of the concert series beginning January 2013. www.grand-countyconcertseries.org