SoloDuo Play and Teach at Oberlin
SoloDuo, the extraordinary ensemble of Italian guitarists Lorenzo Micheli and Matteo Mela, were in Oberlin last week for a return visit, perhaps their fourth. They taught an inspiring master class, gave a sublime performance and visited with us all, before moving on to other venues in other towns. We aways feel elevated and inspired after the duo shares their music with us, and this time was no different. Thank you SoloDuo!
Here are a few images from the visit.
The concert (full program at end of post):
The duo played to a near-capacity room. Their program was perfectly balanced between early music and newer works, lyrical and virtuosic pieces, arrangements and music originally for the guitar, the familiar and the obscure.
In their customary on-stage arrangement, close together and playing by memory, SoloDuo played the most beautiful rendition of Scarlatti on guitars I have ever heard (and I've heard this done a lot). They included a new arrangement of works by Leoš Janáček, a revelation.
Lorenzo spoke a few times to the audience, in his customary perfect English. They played a Debussy group that took my breath away.
The duo finished with the Spanish chestnut, Tonadilla, of Rodrigo, and with it, brought down the house. A standing ovation led to a brief outing with a short and melancholy work by Scarlatti. The concert was memorably sublime.
And, the master class.
To start off, Jonathan Bodian played the first movement from El Decameron Negro of Leo Brouwer.
Next, Mohit Dubey played the Vals from Lauro's Suite Venezolano.
Then Collin Sterne played the Bach Allegro, BWV 998.
After Collin, Aidan Lippke played Giuliani's Variations Op. 114.
Finally, Brian King played the third movement from Lennox Berkley's Sonatina:
And here is SoloDuo's full program:
Again, many thanks to Lorenzo and Matteo for their generosity of spirit and for their inspiring musicianship and instruction. We look forward to the next time they come to town!