Betsy Marvit Senior Composition Recital

I had the pleasure of experiencing something quite novel recently (especially when you consider the band I saw last was The Offspring): seeing a Classical music senior composition performance at the San Francisco Conservatory of Music. Betsy Marvit was the composer.

The concert had six parts to it. The first two parts involved setting poetry to music, primarily for children: The Waking by Theodore Roethke and That was Summer, Night Whispers, and Running Song by Marci Ridlon. The latter pieces in particular were done very well by the young performers. The third part of the concert, The Mantra of the Heart diverged from the first two in many respects, including but not limited to an audience participation segment involving chanting Om mani padme hum. Very interesting stuff, though we were one of the few people who were singing alone.

After intermission we returned to witness some great Cello playing in a Sonata for Solo Cello commissioned and performed by Barbara Bogatin. This was followed by The Gift which is a song about death. Perhaps it's my self-destructive tendency, I found this piece pretty uplifting.

The highlight of the recital was the 1st Movement of a Viola Concerto which I think was the most ambitious and impressive piece that was put on. It involved over twenty musicians, pretty complex, and quite interesting. It was a fitting end to a great recital that showcased some very fine music.

Music ram-blings || Ram Samudrala || || April 18, 1999