The Well-Tempered Ear

Classical music: For Mother’s Day this Sunday, consider giving the gift of live music – Chopin, Debussy, Dvorak and Grieg. Plus, organist-composer Carson Cooman performs a FREE recital tonight at St. Andrew’s Episcopal Church. | May 10, 2013

ALERT:  A friend writes:  The composer and organist Carson Cooman (below) will perform a FREE recital tonight, Friday, May 10, at 7:30 p.m. in St. Andrew’s Episcopal Church, 1833 Regent Street.  I thought you might want to give readers a heads up about this.  It the last concert of the church’s yearly concert series.  This recital is notable for a couple of reasons. Carson is one of today’s leading composers — at the age of 31 he has been amazingly prolific and the music is of a wide range and high quality. He has had 17 CDs recorded of his music — he is also highly regarded as an organ recitalist with over 130 works by 100 composers written for him. And the recital has a few baroque composers, but is mostly of contemporary works especially suited for St. Andrew’s beautiful Taylor and Boody tracker organ.  I have attached the concert’s program and notes. Here is a picture of the organ and a link to its specs: http://www.taylorandboody.com/opus_pages/opus_33/simpleviewer/organ_photo_gallery.html

Here is a link to Cooman’s website. http://www.carsoncooman.com/

Carson Cooman and organ

By Jacob Stockinger

It’s late if you are still searching for a Mother’s Day gift. But here is something to consider.

At first it may seem odd to schedule a concert on Mother’s Day. But then I think of the role that music played with the lives of me and my Mom, and it doesn’t seem to far out.

So The Ear got word from Trevor Stephenson, who is hosting one of his delightful and relaxed house concerts (below) on Mother’s Day, this coming Sunday.

Schubert house concert

This Sunday afternoon, May 12, at 3 p.m. — on Mother’s Day — he will play a house concert of piano music by Frederic Chopin (selected Mazurkas and Nocturnes) and Claude Debussy (“Children’s Corner Suite” – how fitting for Moms), with some cameo appearances by Antonin Dvorak (“Humoresque,” at bottom) and Edvard Grieg (“Cow-keepers Song”).

The featured instrument will his beloved and historic Victorian English Upright piano “Fred” (below).

Stephenson Fred ca. 1840 upright

There will be tasty treats and refreshment as well. The hospitality is tops, take it from me, and music explanations by Trevor Stephenson are both entertaining and enlightening.

The address is 5729 Forsythia Place on Madison’s far west side.  Admission is $35. Only about 40 people can be accommodated, so reservations are required. 
Contact trevor@trevorstephenson.com
or (608) 238-6092.

Also, coming up on Sunday, June 30, is a house concert featuring the wonderful late piano music of Brahms “Six Piano Pieces,” Op. 118 (complete), which is one of The Ear’s all-time favorite sets of piano pieces). It also includes Claude Debussy’s visionary Violin Sonata from 1917 –- and one of The Ear’s all-time favorite pieces of chamber music. Guest violinist will be Brandi Berry from Chicago — playing on gut strings, as it was done in 1917!


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