By Crystal Smith
On April 22 at 7:30 PM, the Department of Music presented a Spring Concert featuring the University/Community Orchestra at the Cecilia S. Cohen Recital Hall in the Fine & Performing Arts Center.
The concert was directed by Betsy Buzzelli-Clarke and featured ESU students as well as community members.
The orchestra included 14 different instrument sections which included violin, the viola, the cello, flute, the oboe/English horn, clarinet, the bass clarinet, horns, the trumpet, trombone, the tuba, percussion, and the piano/keyboard.
Along with the director, there were three guest conductors including Joseph Oblick, Marcus Howard, and Jenny Galunic.
The seats filled as the orchestra members took their chairs and started tuning their instruments.
The concert kicked off with pieces by Academic Festival Overture by Johannes Brahms and arr. by Vernon Leidig, and Symphony No. 40 in G Minor, K. 550 by Wolfgang Amadeus Mozart and Allegro Molto.
After the first two songs, the director introduced Joseph Oblick who was the first guest conductor of the evening. Oblick chose Berceuse and Finale from the Fireboard Suite by Igor Stravinsky and arr. by Merle J. Isaac. Oblick’s entire body swayed with the music as he was conducting. The audience responded with enthusiastic applause as Oblick bowed and took a very satisfied breath.
After Oblick, the second guest conductor of the night was introduced. Marcus Howard conducted the piece October by Eric Whitacre. The piece started off slow but Howard was able to pull the energy from the audience, the musicians, and the piece. After the song concluded, Howard’s face broke into a smile and he bowed to the audience.
The concert was then turned back to the director with Claude Debussy’s Nocturnes. It was conducted with clarity and the director made the work of the musicians flawless considering the complexity of the piece.
After this piece, the audience was introduced to Jenny Galunic who presented Pirates of the Caribbean originally by Claus Badelt and arr. by Ted Ricketts. Galunic explained how this is one of the favorite pieces of music to conduct with orchestras.
The mixed audience responded well with nods to their neighbors and a sense of stillness throughout as they listened to each note. The song was played in its entirety with the audience responding in a thunderous applause.
The concert wrapped up with Pictures at an Exhibition, Part Five by Modest Mussorgsky, Baba-Yaga, and The Great Gate of Kiev. The audience greeted the musicians with another thunderous applause as the concert came to an end.
As the entire University/Community Orchestra stood and took a unison bow, the audience showed their appreciation with clapping and nods. The director, along with each musician and guest conductors smiled as they took their final bow.
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