The Daily Item, Sunbury, PA

October 6, 2012

Annual ‘Close-Up Concerts’ begin at Lycoming College


The Daily Item

WILLIAMSPORT — Co-sponsored by the Williamsport Symphony Orchestra and Lycoming College, the annual series of chamber music concerts titled “Close-up Concerts” begins Sunday at 3 p.m. in the historic Mary Lindsay Welch Honors Hall, Williamsport.

“Russian Spendor” presents some of the region’s finest musicians in a program of music from Russia’s “Golden Age.”

Andrew Rammon is the principal cellist of the Williamsport Symphony and a member of the Grammy-nominated Eaken Trio. Naomi Niskala is a internationally-known pianist and member of the faculty of Susquehanna University. Violinist Anna Draper and pianist Gary Boerckel both performed in the renowned New Music Ensemble of the University of Iowa before moving to Williamsport. Yvonne Mitchell-Sarch performs on piano at regional colleges and universities and is the organist at St. Boniface Church in Williamsport. The program begins with Anton Arensky’s Suite for Two Pianos, Op. 15. Arensky was the court composer for Tsar Nicholas II and his two-piano suite includes the brilliant waltz heard in the 1956 film “Anastasia” starring Ingrid Bergman and Yul Brenner. Dimitri Shostakovich’s sonata for cello and piano was one of his earliest masterpieces, written when the composer was the “boy wonder” of Soviet music.

The Pezzo elegiaco for violin, cello, and piano, composed “in memory of a great artist,” shows  P. I. Tchaikovsky at his most passionate.