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April 09, 2010
Vol. 51 No. 19

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Faculty performs, records

Romantic era takes stage in duo's recital

Two professors of music came together to perform in a faculty recital in Stretansky Concert Hall on Wednesday, April 7 at 8 p.m.

Assistant Professor of Music Naomi Niskala played the piano and Adjunct Professor of Music Andrew Rammon played the cello.

"You can really hear a lot of things through the music: life and emotions and different kinds of sounds," Rammon said.

The recital featured three musical pieces, ranging from the early-Romantic period to the post-Romantic period.

The first piece was German composer Robert Schumann's "Drei Fantasiestucke, Op. 73."
Rammon described the piece by Schumann as "a romantic depiction of a specific character."

The three movements within the piece were "gentle and with expression, lively and light and quick and with fire," according to Rammon.

The second piece the duet performed was early-Romantic composer Felix Mendelssohn's "Sonata in D Major for Cello and Piano." It was a sonata in four movements and was described by Rammon as "a depiction of a nonspecific character."

The final piece was Russian composer Dmitri Shostakovich's "Sonata for Cello and Piano, Op. 40." Like Mendelssohn's piece, it was a sonata in four movements.

"There are three important parts to a successful recital: the composer, the performers and the audience," Rammon said.

"I'm inspired by the actual pieces, the music, playing together," Niskala said.
Niskala and Rammon gave their first performance together at a recital at Penn State on Wednesday, March 31.

"Penn State was a good preparation for tonight," Niskala said.
"It was terrifying because it was our first time through the recital [...] The piano in the concert hall is the best piano in this area. I'd rather play here any day," Rammon said.
The recital was recorded by WVIA for the "Simply Grand Concerts" radio broadcast on Sunday.

"It's scary to play on the radio," Rammon said.

"If you make a mistake, it's etched in stone," Niskala added. "People listen differently when you're on the radio. They can record it and the mistakes will always be there. A live audience is more forgiving," Niskala said.

Rammon added that "any kind of art is interesting to both specialists and people experiencing new things. You don't need to be a musician to appreciate music. Just have an open mind and be an active listener."

The next recital in Stretansky Concert Hall will be a senior recital on Friday, April 9 at 8 p.m. The recital will feature Lyndsaye Reel on saxophone and Matthew Matura on cello.


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