PCC’s present generation of pianists saw their hard work pay off during the sold out “Sun and Shadows: Music of Lightness and Darkness” concert this past Saturday evening in the Westerbeck Recital Hall.
The concert featured ensembles from piano ensemble and piano accompanying classes and was directed by full time instructor, widely acclaimed soloist and chamber musician Philip Young.
Students performed a variety of pieces, some with very dark background stories and others with more spiritual and hopeful themes, hence the tittle “Sun and Shadows.”
Nora de la Torre, Mark Harman, Eunyoung Cho Henderson and Reynold Watkins opened with “Morning Mood” by Edvard Grieg.
“We only do one performance through the semester, so we work towards this point. It takes a lot of time to get students ready, for them to feel confident,” said Young. “We have a class meeting time that meets from 6pm to 10 p.m. but we always have to add a lot of extra time, like over Thanksgiving break. On Sunday I was rehearsing with students from 4 o’clock to 9 o’clock.”
The goal of PCC’s piano accompanying class is to teach pianists, singers and instrumentalists the art of collaboration.
Among the singers who performed was soprano Melina Adragna who said she was not surprised the concert sold out.
“Young always manages to get a big support from the community, from everyone’s family members, to word of mouth. The students that attend this concerts, everyone is so supportive of this program and this production,” she said.
Pianist Bee Tan was excited to see a full house.
“I feel like our hard work paid off because people want to hear us,” she said.
Tan has been playing piano at PCC for three years and she already transferred but keeps coming back to take the piano ensemble class.
“I come back because I feel like I need something more so I only take this class,” she said.
“It was so beautiful looking out and seeing so many people. I always have more energy when I’m singing to more people because I really want to give them a good show,” added Mezzo-soprano singer Abigail Marie Grosch.
Pianists Arisa Komori, Mikaella Nam, Chris Gu and Ka Yee Lam closed the concert with a beautifully played piece by Bedrich Smetana called “Sonata in One Movement.”
“I’ve never been to a piano performance before but it was really amazing, I didn’t know how a piece can take you to a different place, it can make you feel different things,” said audience member and graphic design student Salvador Santamaria. “My favorite piece was the Jambalaya, that one was really good, it was really fun.”
A small reception followed the concert where all the performers, audience members and the director were able to interact, enjoy some tasty desserts and refreshments and talk about the success of the concert.