Richland’s time-honored, fall instrumental faculty music concert was presented by nine outstanding players. The concert took place in the Arena Theatre at noon on Nov. 1. In his introductory remarks, music department head Derrick Logozzo reminded the audience that Richland is privileged to enjoy not only a fine staff of excellent music instructors, but a group of world-class performers as well. The superb concert that followed certainly proved his point.
Opening the program was newcomer professor John Romero, who was flawless in his trombone rendition of J.S. Bach’s “Cello Suite No. 2 in D Minor.” Although written for a string instrument, the piece is often attempted by brass soloists. It is very challenging with frequent flashes of accidentals and over-octave intervals. Professor Romero nailed it.
Next came professor Omar Surillo who performed on the piano his own brief five-movement composition titled: “Delineations.” This piece was especially interesting in its wide range of emotional expression.
Professor Mathew Croft then played Mozart’s familiar “Horn Concerto No. 2 in E-flat major, K.417” on the French horn accompanied by professor Linda Erwin on piano. The duo was remarkable in their cohesion and deft interpretation of the swells and fades of Mozart’s popular lilting melody that is a personal favorite. It was especially well received within the intimate space of the Arena Theatre.
The program then transitioned to jazz as professor Logozzo on marimba and steel pan and professor Joe Lee on electric guitar teamed to perform “Autumn Leaves” by Kosma and Mercer, and “Wave” by Antonio Carlos Jobim. Logozzo is always impressive with his versatility, intensity and dexterity when he switches so smoothly from one percussion instrument to another, but his work on the steel pan on Tuesday was nothing short of amazing. Lee was equally proficient, as always, as he teased all sorts of stirring feelings from his guitar.
Professor Nathan Phillip, accompanied again by Erwin on piano, then played Franz Strauss’ “Nocturno, Op. 7 for French horn and piano,” and the recital ended with professors Brad Williams, piano, and Ron Jones, tenor-sax playing “From a Dream” by Neil Larson.
It is always inspirational for college music students to attend a serious concert prepared and performed by their familiar teachers. The entire Richland community is also lucky to have such a marvelous array of talent showcased on campus that is much appreciated in Dallas and the region.