Blake Radke | Contributing Writer
Maestro Elliot Wilcox conducted a concert that was highly entertaining, warm, and exciting. The Century College Chamber Orchestra displayed a high level of sensitivity, and technical deftness. On Saturday, March 4, they performed a selection of works by Johannes Brahms, J.S. Bach, and Franz Schubert.
The highlight of the works played was surely the Double Concerto in C minor for 2 pianos and strings. The soloists, Irina and Julia Elkina (sisters), executed the sophisticated and tightly interwoven passages flawlessly. Passions and emotions exuded from the keys as the sister’s skillfully trained hands pulled forth truly great music. The first and third movements being the two allegro sections; had, a wonderful and quick opening theme. A thoughtfully slow adagio middle section melded the two high flying end sections perfectly; with, the sister’s playing in a lovely lyrical manner.
The orchestra provided a sublime accompaniment to the Elkina sisters. The fast moving first and third movements were light and swift in the violins. The cellos and basses echo the violins’ lightness. The slower middle movement adopted a thoughtful elegance; the low strings doubled the first piano’s (Julia) left hand with a pizzicato foundation reminiscent of something a jazz bassist would achieve. An exciting performance by all parties, supremely guided by Maestro Wilcox.
As a member of the orchestra, I will mention some of the hurdles that were overcome during performance week. Concert week has a tendency to make or break many orchestras. But the unity and cohesion of the orchestra improved drastically in the days leading up to the performance. And a great attitude within the members added to the overall success of the concert.
The orchestra meets on a weekly basis to rehearse and prepare the selected pieces and perhaps for a more important social reason. There is a sense of respect and friendship between the members of this orchestra; much more than many orchestras in which I have played.
Look forward to the upcoming May concert. The Century College Chamber Orchestra will debut a piece by Century’s own music professor, Dr. Shirley Mier.