By George Miller
Special to the DCI
A cello quartet entertained lucky attenders at the Delta Performing Arts Center Friday night.
It was an unusual sight on many levels. Who'd have thought a string quartet could draw a crowd that large?
And who ever thought a string quartet could be made up of just four cellos? Where were the violas and the violins?
The good news is, the cellos didn't need them. They produced a full sound, both precise and mellow, and gave us samples of classical as well as contemporary and jazz music that consistently delighted the audience.
The Rastrelli Cello Quartet comes to us from Russia. The four artists are all classically trained musicians, who have played with other orchestras like the St. Petersburg Philharmonic Orchestra, the St. Petersburg Soloists Chamber Orchestra, the Minsk Chamber Orchestra, and Wurttembergisches Kammerorchester in Germany.
They are young, (the oldest only 59), and their stage presence is both relaxed and collegial yet impassioned. Their love of their instruments is infectious, inviting the audience to join them in an outpouring of beauty. As they reminded us, music is a universal language; we all understood their message of the love of beauty.
They offered us a classic like "The Swan" from St. Saens suite "Carnival of the Animals" — an ideal piece for the lush sound of the cello — as well as a lilting interpretation of Leroy Anderson's "Syncopated Clock" and "The Waltzing Cat." I heard strains of "The Glow Worm" at one point, demonstrating their versatility with a sparkle in their eyes.
Kira Kraftzoff, their spokesperson, gave helpful explanations without being professorial, and literally let his hair down in the second half of the program leading the group in a rousing rendition of Paul Desmond's "Take Five." My personal favorite was their rendition of Jewish folk songs, one of which, it turned out, had actually been composed by their group arranger Sergio Drabkine. He deserved the applause we gave him for his excellent efforts.
The Delta-Montrose Community Concert Association deserves our thanks and our congratulations on their providing us this fine evening of music. I for one look forward to more concerts in the next season. You should too!blog comments powered by Disqus