ASU violinists shine at Tempe lakeside performance
"Performance with a View" is a free musical concert series held from September to June in the Tempe Center for the Arts. The concert series is sponsored by Friends of TCA and Tempe Camera and often features ASU faculty and students.
ASU School of Music professor Danwen Jiang hosted a recital for six of her students at TCA. Jiang, who introduced the recital, spoke with immense pride about her three undergraduate and three graduate students. As she briefly covered her students' successes, she also mentioned that three of her students were invited to perform at Carnegie hall.
The recital opened with a piece from Beethoven, "Sonata No. 3 in E Flat Major." Three concertos were performed by violin performance sophomore Xiangyuan Huang and collaborative piano doctoral student Zhou Jiang. "Allegro con Spirit" featured high energy, sharp sounds and there were very few lingering notes in the piece. The second concerto, "Adagio con molto espressione," was softer, solemn and possessed longer notes. The third concerto, "Rondo: Allegro molto," was vibrant and uplifting.
Huang performed with vitality and strength as she seemed absorbed in the music that was flawlessly accompanied on the piano by Jiang.
The next piece was written by Belgian composer Eugène Ysaÿe: "Sonata for unaccompanied violin, Op. 27 No. 2." Violin performance junior Shu Liu performed two concertos: "Obsession; Prelude" and "Les Furies." Both concertos were short and high-pitched. The fast bowing and sharp notes brought an air of urgency to the music.
"Obsession; Prelude" seemed hysterical, while Lui's violin ability and intensity gave the chaotic-sounding "Les furies" life.
Doctoral students Sarah Off (violin) and Yeo Jin Seol (piano) performed work from George Enescu, a Romanian composer. During her introduction of the piece, Off mentioned that Enescu enjoyed playing with beats.
"He has an incredible sense of rhythm," she said, before warning the audience about how the piece may sound due to different tempos and timing.
The two performed "Sonata for Violin" and "Piano in F minor, No. 2, Op. 6." They only featured one concerto, "Assez Mouvemente" during their performance. The piece slid into long notes and soft pauses as though the instruments were conversing with one another. The tempo gradually increased and more rhythms were introduced to the music. The beats of the piano had greater speed, whereas Off who kept a rhythm with shorter notes played at a slower speed.
The two played brilliantly. The exchange of rhythms sounded strange at first, but they flowed into seamless harmony soon after. It was admirable to see people play within the same piece, while also playing against each other's tune. The piece required great focus and an excellent ear.
The last piece was performed by violin performance sophomores Xiangyuan Huang and Clarice Collins. S. Prokofiev's "Sonata for Two Violins, Op. 56" featured four concertos: "Andante cantabile," "Allegro," "Commodo (quasi allegretto)" and "Allegro con brio."
Collins and Huang, two of the students invited to play at Carnegie hall had beautiful harmonies, and their love for the violin was apparent in their movements.
This violin recital featured some of the best and brightest of ASU music students, proving that Jiang's students hold a wealth of talent.
Reach the reporter at Stephanie.Tate@asu.edu or follow her on Twitter @StephanieITA