String Program Nov. 15 at Placitas Artists Series. Virtual, Of Course

Violist Kim Fredenburgh and the Altura Ensemble will give a virtual concert at 3 p.m. Sunday, Nov. 15. The concert is part of the Placitas Artists Series’ 34th season. The program includes music by J.S. Bach, Ludwig van Beethoven, Anton Arensky, Augusta Read Thomas, David Dean Mendoza, Krzysztof Penderecki and Witold Lutoslawski.
Tickets for the event are $25 at www/ On the day of the concert ticket holders will get an email sent to the email address they used to buy the tickets. The email will have the link to the virtual concert.

By David Steinberg
Music by two famous composers – J.S. Bach and Ludwig van Beethoven – are on the Sunday, Nov. 15 virtual concert program presented by Placitas Artists Series.
The Bach? Selected movements from his G major Cello Suite performed by James Holland.
“Everybody loves it,” said violist Kim Fredenburgh, who organized the program.
In an interesting contrast, bassist Toby Vigneau will play some movements from Bach’s Suite No. 5 in C minor transcribed for solo cello.
The Beethoven? It is the first movement of his String Trio No. 1. “We thought we needed Beethoven in there. It’s energizing, upbeat music and it’s a pretty big movement,” Fredenburgh said.
In it, she will be joined by Holland and violinist Cármelo de los Santos.
The rest of the pieces are by comparatively lesser known, though accomplished, composers.
There are three duos.
One will feature de los Santos and Vigneau in Krzysztof Penderecki’s Duo Concertante. “There are fireworks for both instruments,” Fredenburgh said.
She and Holland will play five short movements based on Polish folk dances collected by Witold Lutoslawski. “Neither James nor I have played them before. It’s fun to find music you haven’t played,” Fredenburgh said.
The third duo, for violin and viola, is “Silent Moon” by Augusta Read Thomas.
“Cármelo and I have worked on it under Thomas’ direction” when Thomas was a guest composer at a University of Music music festival.
Closing the program will be the second and third movements of Anton Arensky’s String Quartet No. 2. “The second movement has variations on a theme of Tchaikovsky audit’s often featured by itself. It’s soft and minor. We felt we have to end with a bang. (The third movement) ends with big loud chords,” Fredenburgh said.
Also, Fredenburgh will play “The Lament for Solo Viola by David Dean Mendoza. “It’s an evocative powerful work,” she said.
The ensemble will be performing at Las Placitas Presbyterian Church, the series’ home. Because of Covid-19 restrictions there won’t be an audience present and, Fredenburgh said, the musicians will all be masked and sitting six feet apart.
Presented in tandem with the concert is a virtual juried video art exhibit titled “All Creatures, Great and Small.” It will have work by New Mexico artists Lyndia Radice (digital painting), Carol Ordogne (linocut/watercolor and oil on canvas), Judith Roderick (quilt art), Ron Richman (photography on infused aluminum), and Christiane Couvert (ceramics).
Accompanying the exhibit is music created for each artist by PAS resident composer John Bullock.
Concertgoers are invited to view the virtual art show on the PAS website before or after the performance. In fact, the art show be up for public viewing on the website through the end of November.

Pianist Katie Mahan Gives PAS Concert Live-Streamed from Salzburg

Pianist Katie Mahan performs an all-Mozart live-streamed virtual concert at 3 p.m. Sunday, Oct. 18. To sign up for tickets go to and find the link Tickets may be purchased the day before or the day of the concert.

By David Steinberg
Acclaimed American pianist Katie Mahan brings a touch of fashion and travel for her Sunday, Oct. 18 Placitas Artists Series virtual concert.
Mahan will give her audience views of the town of Salzburg, Austria and she will display the one-of-a-kind evening gown she’s wearing for her all-Mozart concert.
“This particular dress is inspired by the beautiful venue where I will perform, and where Mozart had played on many occasions. The hall (of the Mirabell Palace) is marble, everything is gilded, shining and gold. …The dress is gold, off-the-shoulder. It was selected to match the look of the hall,” Mahan said in a phone interview from Salzburg, where she lives part of the year.
Salzburg happens to be Mozart’s birthplace.
“During this whole (Covid-19) crisis it is important for people to enjoy themselves, enjoy the music and come away from the concert not only feeling enlightened by the music but also to have fun,” Mahan said.
The concert program is intentionally varied, and includes three piano sonatas Mozart composed in his childhood and two other early works, the Allegro in C major and the Klavierstuck in F major.
They’re followed by the rarely performed Fantasy and Fugue in C major (K. 394).
After moving to Vienna, Mahan said, “Mozart had access to many of the works of Bach and became infatuated with the fugue. So he wrote a number of fugues at this time. …This particular one is really worthy of Bach. It’s a very unusual piece and something very different than what you hear in his piano sonatas and his more popular works.”
Next up is the Piano Sonata in A minor (K. 310) , which Mahan said is probably one of his most frequently played works, and is one of only two piano sonatas that he wrote in a minor key.
“The second movement,” she noted, “is full of incredible beauty and delicacy and I think it really shows his deep connection to his mother.” She had died when they were in Paris.
The concluding work on the program is the Piano Sonata in A major (K. 331). The rondo portion of it is marked a la turca, which is one of Mozart’s most famous melodies. “I chose this sonata because it is so beloved and it ends the concert on a happy, wonderful note,” Mahan said.
A Colorado native, Mahan is a Steinway Artist and Deutsche Grammophon recording artist.

In tandem with the concert is a PAS virtual juried art show. It presents the work of four New Mexico artists – P.K. Williams (acrylic, oil and cold wax), Lauren Deyo (acrylic and mixed media), Denise Elvrum (fused glass) and Dianna Shomaker (oil). Concertgoers are invited to view the art at before and after the concert. Anyone may see the art show through Oct. 31.

Violinist Rachel Barton Pine Opens Placitas Artists Series Season On Sunday, Sept. 13

Violinist Rachel Barton Pine will give a solo live-streamed concert at 7 p.m. MT Sunday, Sept. 13. The concert opens the Placitas Artists Series’ 34th season. The program includes music by J.S. Bach, Mark O’Connor, Coleridge-Taylor Perkinson and others.

Opening the virtual event at 6:45 p.m. will be a juried art show featuring works by four New Mexico artists. Tickets for the live-streamed event are $20 and may be purchased at

By David Steinberg

Famed violinist Rachel Barton Pine has performed in person at venues in Placitas and in Albuquerque. But her Sunday, Sept. 13 Placitas Artists Series concert comes with a twist.

Pine opens the series’ 34th season from a distant location – her home in Chicago.

Pine’s solo performance will be live-streamed because of New Mexico’s restrictions on large gatherings.

“Perhaps what I miss more than anything is the sound of a concert hall. There’s nothing like hearing the reverberation,” she said in a phone interview. “But thanks to the high-end mikes in my apartment, the sound is very good. I’m grateful for that. … I definitely enjoy the opportunity to connect virtually (with audiences).

“We will also have of the feeling of being in the same room together in an acoustic space and not on a screen. It will allow people from a wide geographical area and those not able to go out to  the concerts” to share my music …in this new way,” Pine added.

She is presenting a varied concert program with a portion of uniquely American fiddle music. It has elements of fiddle music of West African transferred to Europe, the music of the enslaved and their enslavers, and music of the British Isles, particularly Scottish music.

The program includes J.S. Bach’s Partita No. 3 in E major, Mark O’Connor’s Caprice No.  1, Coleridge-Taylor Perkinson’s “Louisiana Blues Strut (A Cakewalk),” a set of Noel da Costa dance tunes, Daniel Bernard Roumain’s Hip-Hop Dances and Prayers, traditional 18th century Scottish air, march, strathspey and reel, Henri Vieuxtemps’ “Souvenir d’Amérique and an arrangement of Pine’s own piece “A Day at the Ballpark.”

“I’m so excited about this program,” Pine said.

Pine has appeared as a soloist with many of the world’s prestigious orchestras and chamber ensembles, including the Vienna Symphony, the Chicago Symphony Orchestra,  the Royal Philharmonic and the Camerata Salzburg.

Her 2019-2020 season included a residency with the Singapore Symphony and performances with the Royal Scottish National Orchestra, the Seattle Baroque Orchestra and the Tel Aviv Soloists.

In 2018 Pine’s RBP Foundation released Music by Black Composers (MBC)  – Violin, Vol. 1, the first in a series of pedagogical music books by Black classical composers. Also published was the MBC Coloring Book of Black Composers.

Fifteen minutes before Pine’s 7 p.m. PAS concert will be a virtual juried art show featuring works by four New Mexico artists – Tony Mattson, photography; Carol Adamec, mixed medium painting; Ron Wijngaard, oil painting; and Myra Gadson, classic and contemporary jewelry. All art is available for purchase. Original music by PAS resident composer John Bullock will accompany the art show. 

The PAS 2020-21 season concerts – and the virtual art show – may be viewed at

Members of the Animal Kingdom – And a Mythical Member – are the Subjects of Songs Performed by Música Antigua de Albuquerque in Concert March 1 in Santa Fe and March 8 in Albuquerque

Música Antigua de Albuquerque presents a concert titled “A Trip to the Zoo,” a musical bestiary, at 4 p.m. Sunday, March 1 at Christ Lutheran Church, 1701 Arroyo Chamiso, Santa Fe and at 4 p.m. Sunday, March 8 at St. Michael & All Angels Episcopal Church, 601 Montaño NW, Albuquerque.

Tickets are $20 general public, $15 seniors and $10 students. For tickets and more information call 505-842-9613 or email

By David Steinberg

Birds, snakes, insects – and even a skunk – are the subjects of songs in Música Antigua de Albuquerque’s March concerts in Santa Fe and Albuquereque.

Thomas Weelkes’ beautiful “The Nightingale” and Jacob Arcadelt’s “Il Bianco e Dolce Cigno” are two of the pieces about birds in the concerts.

“Arcadelt, a 16th century Dutch composer, wrote this very famous and very beautiful piece about a swan. “It’s one of the gems of the Renaissance that’s widely performed and it’s a work we enjoy coming back to,” said Art Sheinberg, a founding member of Musica Antigua.

A piece from 18th century England is “The Bird Fancier’s Delight.” Sheinberg said it supposedly was written to train caged birds to sing various songs. Ruth Helgeson will perform its three melodies solo on recorder.

“Most of the pieces are sung by Música Antigua members in vocal ensembles. I’m the only member who doesn’t sing,” he said.

Dogs and cats are also the subjects of songs in the concert.

The 17th century song by Englishman Richard Browne “We Cats When Assembled at Midnight,” is an example of a catch, or round, sung in pubs, Sheinberg said.  It’s about cats causing trouble, scratching, clawing, fighting and spitting.

Canines aren’t left out. There’s a song by 16th century German composer Ludwig Senfl(cq) called ‘Wohlauf, wohlauf.” “It means arise, arise. The singers make different barking sounds. It’s humorous, as quite a few of the pieces on the program are,” Sheinberg said.

The ensemble plays and sings about the cicada in “Scaldava Il Sol” by 16th century Italian Luca Marenzio. Everything is at peace in the midday sun except the cicada, Sheinberg said in explaining the lyrics.

Even the mythical unicorn is a musical subject. An anonymous 13th century Swiss composed wrote “Unicornis Captivatur,” Latin for the unicorn is taken captive. “It’s religious symbolism. The unicorn represents Christ in the Virgin birth,” he said.

A song about a python has the serpent serving as a metaphor for a lady rejecting the love of a suitor. It was composed by Guillaume de Machaut in 14th century France.

From 15th century Spain comes the song “La zorrilla con el gallo” (The Skunk and the Chicken). Sheinberg said it’s a story about sexual encounters between the two; the skunk is the female.

The concerts are Sunday, March 1 at Christ Lutheran Church in Santa Fe and Sunday, March 8 at St. Michael & All Angels Episcopal Church in Albuquerque.

Besides Sheinberg and Helgeson, the other ensemble members are Hovey Dean Corbin, Dennis Davies-Wilson, David McGuire and Colleen Sheinberg.

New CD out from Música Antigua de Albuquerque – “The Four Elements”

By David Steinberg

Almost 75 minutes of music are on the newly released CD from the early music ensemble Música Antigua de Albuquerque.

The CD is titled “The Four Elements – Earth, Water, Air & Fire.” and contains 29 medieval and Renaissance compositions, starting from the 12th century  with Hildegard of Bingen’s “O ignis spiritu.”

The CD liner notes said Bingen became “the most celebrated woman of her time. She was involved in politics and diplomacy and her advice was sought by popes, emperors, kings and archbishops. …Her writings include a book of visions, two books on natural history and medicine, the earliest known morality play and a large collection of poetry and music.”

One of the moore recent – if that’s the right word – pieces on the album is Nicholas Lanier’s “Fire! fire! Lo here I burn.” It is from the early to mid-17th century. Lanier was a British composer and singer.

Among the selections from the intervening centuries are Michael Praetorius’ “Ballet des feus,” John Dowland’s “Deare, if you change,” Orlando di Lasso’s “Beau le cristal,” Giovanni Croce’s “Gode la terra” and Martin Codax’s “Ondas do mar de Vigo.”

The music on the CD comes out of western Europe, including the countries of Germany, England, Scotland, Spain, Italy and France.

The CD is Música Antigua’s sixth. “We often get asked by people at concerts, ‘Are you going to make another recording?’ That’s where the main consumers of our recorded music are, and also from people who are not able to come to our concerts but want to hear what we play,” said Art Sheinberg, a founding member of Música Antigua.

Sheinberg and his wife and fellow founding member Colleen Sheinberg  wrote the liner notes.

The compositions on the CD are basically the same as those the ensemble performed in concert last May.

The ensemble recorded the CD in about eight sessions at the University of New Mexico’s Keller Hall. Manny Rettinger and Elizabeth Rincón were the recording engineers. Rincón also did the editing and mastering.

Colleen Sheinberg said Keller was used because St. Michael and All Angels Episcopal Church, where the ensemble performs in Albuquerque, is on a busy street and “we don’t like the dead space of a recording studio. We prefer performing a space that’s live, and Keller Hall is.”

In addition to the Sheinbergs, the other Música Antigua members are Hovey Dean Corbin, Ruth Helgeson, David McGuire and Dennis Davies-Wilson.

Copies of the CD may be ordered from the website, by calling 505-842-9613 or may be purchased at Música Antigua concerts.

The next paired concerts are in March – at 4 p.m. Sunday, March 1 at Christ Evangelical Lutheran Church, 1701 Arroyo Chamiso, Santa Fe and at 4 p.m. Sunday, March 8 at St. Michael & All Angels Episcopal Church, 601 Montaño NW, Albuquerque. The concert’s theme is “A Trip to the Zoo.”

For concert reservations and information call 842-9613 or email

Horn, Violin and Piano are Showcased at a Sunday, Jan. 19 Placitas Artists Series Concert

The Placitas Artists Series presents music for horn, violin and piano at 3 p.m. Sunday, Jan. 19 at Las Placitas Presbyterian Church, about five miles east of Interstate-25 on NM 165 in Placitas.

Single tickets are $25 and are available at The Merc Grocery, Homestead Village Shopping Center, on NM 165 in Placitas, at Under Charlie’s Covers, 160 S. Camino del Pueblo, Bernalillo, at and, if available, at the door.

$15 for students with ID. Any student through grade 12 is free with a paying adult.

A 2 p.m. reception will be held for the visual artists whose work is on exhibit in the church lobby.

By David Steinberg

Peter Erb said he selected the works for the Sunday, Jan. 19 Placitas Artists Series program to show the whole range of three instruments – the horn, the violin and the piano.

Erb, principal horn of the New Mexico Philharmonic, will be in concert at Las Placitas Presbyterian Church with London-based violinist Jenna Sherry and pianist Luke Gullickson of Albuquerque.

Johannes Brahms’ Horn Trio opens the second half of the concert.

“I think it is the most substantial work on the program,” Erb said. “One interesting thing about the trio is that Brahms was inspired to write melody in the first movement from a walk in the woods. (His walks) were part of the compositional process.”

Brahms wrote the trio shortly after the death of his mother from a stroke. “You hear that mourning through the whole piece.. On the whole it’s very affecting, Erb said.

Clara Schumann’s three Romances for Violin and Piano, which closes the first half of the concert, are three actually separate movements. “There’s a flowing first movement, a very lyrical second movement and a third movement that features fast, flowing figures. …It’s really enjoyable to listen to this classical Romantic writing,” Erb  said.

Opening the concert is Frederic Nicolas Duvernoy’s Trio No. 2 in F major for Horn and Violin and piano, followed by Hans Abrahamsen’s Six Pieces, rearranged for horn, violin and piano.

The Abrahamsen, originally written for solo piano, “has a pacing to it that seems romantic even though the tonal structure isn’t necessarily all that perceptible,” Erb said.

Like Brahms, Abrahamsen played horn as a young man and then became a composer.

Abrahamsen’s opera “The Snow Queen” premiered a few months ago at the Bavarian State Opera.

Closing the concert is Robert Schumann’s Adagio and Allegro, Opus 70, for Horn and Piano. Erb considers it a showpiece for the two instruments.

This is the third time Erb has played on the Placitas Artists Series. The first two were with Willy Sucre & Friends.

“This is the first time organizing a concert. It’s a great opportunity. I’m thrilled to put together a whole program and have free rein to choose the composers,” Erb said.

Erb and Sherry, both natives of New Orleans, knew each other as members of that city’s youth orchestra.

Erb is also principal horn of the Arizona Opera Orchestra.

Sherry performs with chamber orchestras across Europe and teaches at the Royal Conservatory in The Hague.

Gullickson regularly plays with Chatter and the Opera Southwest Orchestra; he is a founding member of the Grant Wallace Band. He’s also a guitarist, a composer and an improviser.

Young Pianist-Composer Michael Brown in Recital Jan. 11 in Corrales

Pianist-composer Michael Brown performs music of Beethoven, Mendelssohn, Ravel, Copland and one of his own compositions at 7:30 p.m. Saturday, Jan. 11 at the Historic Old San Ysidro Church, 966 Old Church Road., Corrales. The concert is part of the Music in Corrales series.

Tickets are $25 in advance at Frame-n-Art in Corrales and online at https://michael $30 at the door if available.

By David Steinberg

Michael Brown says his Saturday, Jan. 11 piano recital program in Corrales explores some of his favorite pieces to play by four composers – Felix Mendelssohn, Ludwig van Beethoven, Maurice Ravel, and Aaron Copland.

The program opens with Mendelssohn’s Variations sérieuses, which Brown describes in an email as “a revelatory work written to raise money for a statue of Beethoven in Bonn.”

That’s followed by Brown’s own composition, “Surfaces,” which premiered in 2016. It was inspired by four paintings by his friend Roman Rabinovich, an artist and pianist.

Because 2020 marks the 250th anniversary of Beethoven’s birth, Brown is performing his famous Piano Sonata in C-sharp minor, Opus 27, No. 2, commonly known as the “Moonlight” Sonata.

The second half of the program begins with Ravel’s “Miroirs,” which Brown said is “one of the most inventive, evocative and large-scale contributions to the piano repertoire.

“Each of the five movements in the Ravel is a feast for the imagination. Inspired by different natural elements (e.g. night moths, sad birds), each movement takes the listener on a different journey through the exotic and the sublime.”

The program closes with Leonard Bernstein’s arrangement for solo piano of Copland’s symphonic work “El Salón Mexico.”  Brown explains that the work is “directly influenced by his visit to Mexico City, and it is full of charm, dance, virtuosity, and a boisterous spirit.” Specifically, Copland was influenced by the different music styles he heard in a popular Mexico City nightclub with three separate dance halls.

The New York Times has described Brown as “a young piano visionary.”

Brown won the 2018 Emerging Artist Award from Lincoln Center, the 2015 Avery Fisher Career Grant and the 2010 Concert Artists Guild Competition. He has soloed with the Seattle Symphony and the National Philharmonic, given recitals at Carnegie Hall and the Mostly Mozart Festival, and has appeared at numerous festivals, including Tanglewood, Marlboro, Ravinia and Music@Menlo.

Brown received a bachelor’s and a master’s degree in piano and composition from The Juilliard School.

Albuquerque Chamber Soloists Concert Sunday, Jan. 5

Albuquerque Chamber Soloists will be in concert at 3 p.m. Sunday, Jan. 5 at St. Paul Lutheran Church, 1100 Indian School NE. The program includes music of Gabriel Faure, Hugo Wolf, Pablo de Sarasate, Carl Engel and Caroline Shaw.

Tickets are $15 general public, $12 seniors and $5 students in advance at and at PianoWerkes, 4640 Menaul NE or, if available, at the door.

At 2:15 p.m. there is a pre-concert reception with refreshments provided by Napoli Coffee and a talk that James Holland will give about the program.

By David Steinberg

James Holland says Gabriel Faure may be best known for his Requiem but he also wrote some beautiful pieces for cello and piano.

The cello and piano are two of the four instruments in Faure’s Piano Quartet in C minor that is the concluding work on the Albuquerque Chamber Soloists’ concert on Sunday, Jan. 5.

“The parts are equal between the string players and the piano. It’s really a gorgeous piece and C minor works nicely particularly for the cello, which gets some juicy things in it,” said Holland, ACS president.

“I think Faure is one of the most underrated composers out there.”

The work, he said, is in four movements – a stormy opening movement, a light scherzo alternating between double and triple rhythms, a “nobly mournful adio in the third movement and an energetic finale.

The four musicians in the quartet are Holland on cello, David Felberg on viola, Megan Holland on violin and Pamela Pyle at the piano. Pyle, piano professor at UNM, is subbing for Judith Gordon, who is in therapy after injuring her hand, James Holland said.

The piano quartet “is a youthful work but very mature,” Megan Holland said. “The scherzo is neat, light and spare. It feels like we’re skipping along. Though light and dancing, the movement has you off-kilter for awhile.”

Also on the program are four short works.

Two of them are showpieces that Pyle and Megan Holland will perform – Carl Engel’s Sea-shell” and Pablo de Sarasate’s “Introduction and Tarantella.”

“The Sarasate isn’t played all that much. …He’s known for his ‘Carmen Fantasy’,” Megan Holland said.

The other two short works are both string quartets. They are Hugo Wolf’s “Italian Serenade” and Caroline Shaw’s “Entr’acte.” Shaw’s piece, which premiered in 2011, drew inspiration from a minuet and trio in a Franz Joseph Haydn quartet.

The string quartet performers are Felberg and Michael Shu on violin, Laura Steiner on viola and Holland on cello.

The concert is at St. Paul Lutheran Church.

Hey Kids – There’s a New Book That Helps You Understand Others. The Author? U.S. Supreme Court Justice Sonia Sotomayor

By David Steinberg

Sonia Sotomayor is a United States Supreme Court Justice. And she’s the nation’s first Latina justice.

But you may not have known this fact about her: She’s an author of books for adults and children.

Sotomayor’s newest book – just published Sept. 3 – is “Just ask! Be different, be brave, be you!” The Spanish-language edition is “¡Solo pregunta! – Sé diferente, sé valiante, sé tú.”

As the title declares, the book encourages children to free themselves of constraints. Instead of  simply wondering to themselves why others are different, don’t be afraid to speak up. Ask questions to understand the differences of those around them.

In the book’s story, children with different and challenging conditions can accomplish things and in their own ways they all help make a community garden grow.

The conditions the children have include blindness, deafness, asthma and dyslexia, a learning disability. 

A young girl named Sonia narrates the story. She tells about the conditions that she has ( diabetes) and her neighborhood friends have. Those conditions don’t keep the kids from doing things.

For example:

-Vijay is deaf but he communicates using sign language

-Bianca has dyslexia so she has to work extra hard and take her time in reading and writing words.

-Ahn speaks with a stutter so sometimes she has to repeat a word when she gets stuck.

-Madison is blind but has a guide dog to help her get around. Her friend Arturo is also blind but he uses a can to get around. The two of them can still smell, hear, and touch.

-Rafael has asthma. He uses an inhaler when he has trouble breathing.

The colors, shapes and fragrances of blossoms, berries and leaves reveal the variety of growth in the community garden. That variety is a metaphor for the children’s different conditions.

Just like the young girl Sonia,, the justice writes that she herself suffered from juvenile diabetes, and that was the impetus for writing the book. Because of that childhood condition she sometimes had to publicly inject herself with shots of medicine called insulin. She did it because she wanted to be healthy.

But she wondered why none of her friends and classmates asked her what she was doing. She remembers their silence – Was she doing something wrong? No, she wasn’t. So now we have the book “Just ask!” to give today’s youngsters permission to ask.

Yes you can! ¡Sí se puede!

The book is a terrific story that is helpful for kids to know each other’s differences. It’s aimed at children ages four to six but it’s really a book that teens and adults can learn from.

The text is richly and brilliantly enhanced by the bold, colorful art of award-winning illustrator Rafael López.

–Justice Sotomayor will discuss andautograph her new children’s book at a sold-out public event at Albuquerque’s KiMo Theatre on Sunday, Sept. 8.

Placitas Artists Series: New Season, New Faces, New Programming Begin Sunday, Sept. 8

The 33rd season of the Placitas Artists Series opens 3 p.m. Sunday, Sept. 8 with a concert titled “Music for Oboe and Strings.” The concert is at Las Placitas Presbyterian Church, about five miles east of Interstate-25 on NM 165.

Single tickets are $25 and are available at The Merc Grocery, Homestead Village Shopping Center, on NM 165 in Placitas, at Under Charlie’s Covers, 160 S. Camino del Pueblo, Bernalillo, at and, if available, at the door.

$15 for students with ID. Any student through grade 12 is free with a paying adult.

Full season and half-season tickets are available at the website and at the door.

A 2 p.m. reception will be held for the visual artists whose work is on exhibit in the church lobby.

By David Steinberg

The Placitas Artists Series’ season-opening Sept. 8 concert is a potpourri of compositions for violin, viola, oboe and doublebass.

The program has solos, duos, trios and a quartet. The quartet is an arrangement of a group of ballet scores by Jean-Philippe Rameau’s Suite from “Les Indes Gallantes.”

“Even with four players we have a lot of variety of sound. There’s baroque, and we can play contemporary music,” said violist-concert host Kim Fredenburgh. “I want to present to people music that I love to play.”

Randall Thompson’s Suite for Oboe, Violin and Viola “is a lovely work full of beautiful melodies” that includes American folk fiddling and a movement that sounds like a church hymn chorale, Fredenburgh said.

The other work on the program for three instruments is Johann Michael Haydn’s Divertimento Trio for Oboe, Viola and Violone (basso). It contains a couple of minuets that are sprightly, Fredenburgh said.

There are several pieces for two instruments – W.A. Mozart’s Duo for Violin and Viola, Reinhold Gliere’s Duos for Viola and Doublebass, Opus 39 and Peter Gilbert’s “If one has courage, it is no sorrow to invent songs” for Oboe and Viola.

There are three works for solo instruments – Cármelo de los Santos will perform the Chaconne from J.S. Bach’s Partita No. 2 for Solo Violin, Toby Vigneau will play Francois Rabbath’s “Breiz” for double bass, and Fredenburgh will serve up David Dean Mendoza’s “Threnody” for Solo Viola in the concert opener.

The Mendoza, Fredenburgh said, “is a call to (audience members) to center themselves and be ready to listen.”

The musicians are family or friends. Fredenburgh is married to oboist Kevin Vigneau. Their son, doublebassist Toby Vigneau, is a high school senior. Fredenburgh and Kevin Vigneau are colleagues of de los Santos on UNM’s Music Department faculty.

This Placitas Artists Series this season is a shift in programming. For many years it presented Willy Sucre and Friends in a number of concerts that frequently presented string quartets and string quintets.

“As much as I love string quartets, I don’t want to hear music of one genre,” Fredenburgh said. “My goal is variety (of music) and to hear players in different size groups.”

These are the other announced concerts in the Placitas Artists Series’ 2019-2020 season:

-Oct. 20. The Arc Duo with violinist Cármelo de los Santos and cellist Viktor Uzur.

-Nov. 17. Cellist-host Joan Zucker presents music for piano and strings.

-Dec. 15. Pianist Katie Mahan plays music of Mozart, Liszt, Debussy and Gershwin.

-Jan., 19. Horn player Peter Erb offers up music for horn, violin and piano.

-Feb. 23. Canadian acoustic roots band Beyond the Pale plays music with Balkan, Romanian and Klezmer influences.

-March 15. The duo of clarinetist Maksim Shtrykov and pianist Misuzu Tanaka.

-April 19. Kim Fredenburgh hosts “Songs and Dances,” music for flute and strings.

-May 24. Violinist Eunice Kim and pianist Xiaohui Yang.