After the final note was played, the room exploded into cheers. The music department’s first recital series of the semester, held this past Wednesday in the Ernest E. Mayo Concert Hall, had been a success.
Peter Arboleda, junior music education major, and Gregory Beckley, junior music major, played the cello and the clarinet, respectively. Both had their own ways of preparing and performing, creating an excellent dynamic.
Beckley has been playing for a little over 10 years now. His assigned musical piece, “Fantaisie,” was from a book of solos called “Sixteen Grand Solos De Concert.” Beckley put his own spin on the piece, adding his own style to it.
“There are many cases where we put our own interpretation and nuances into the piece . such as using rubato (a slight bending of the rhythm and/or tempo) to get through a difficult passage,” Beckley said.
Arboleda, also a veteran musician, has been playing the cello since the third grade and chose the instrument at the time because “it was the only one that required you to sit down.”
In his case, he chose to play in the recital because both he and his teacher were confident he was ready for it. However, rehearsals were hard on him. After choosing his musical piece, a movement of Dance Suite No. 6, a “common repertoire for the cello” as he described it, practice was very necessary. He would work on sections he felt were difficult to play, working at slow tempos at first and then working his way up to the actual tempo of the music.
Once he felt he could play the more difficult parts with ease, he began to memorize the piece.
“(It’s difficult) if you don’t have a photographic memory,” Arboleda said.
Taking the piece apart, he would memorize the music in small phrases or sections and try playing them without the music to make sure he had everything memorized.
“After I had all of the parts of the piece memorized, I’d practice just running through the whole entire piece to make sure all the parts fit,” he said, describing his rehearsals as “very vigorous.”
According to him, each performance of the same song is different.
“Some of the performers’ personality naturally mixes into the piece itself . The piece and the performer create an intimate relationship with each other,” Arboleda said.
Beckley performed first with Sally Livingston, the person he chose as his accompanist and a woman who was a constant presence at “studio.” Studio occurs every week when all the clarinet players, or anyone studying with Roger McKinney, associate professor of music, get together and listen to the progress they have made as clarinet players and musicians.
Beckley described Sally Livingston as “a remarkable piano player.” Arboleda performed on his own, allowing the audience to have two completely different, yet equally mesmerizing musical experiences. Both were huge successes that gave their audiences a reason to rave.