Shakespeare in Song is a concert performed by Artes Vocales of Los Angeles on Saturday, May 30, 2015, and this is the concert I chose to attend for this concert report. The concert was held at First Baptist Church of Pasadena California which is located at 75 North Marengo Avenue. The concert features selections by famous composers such as Felix Mendelssohn, Giuseppe Verdi and Ralph Vaughn Williams, and it is conducted by Dr. Steven Kronauer, who is the chair of the voice department at the University of California, Santa Barbara. I think he is one of the reason why this concert could draw large audiences. Furthermore, three actors, Bree Pavey, Raymond Donahey and Brendan Haley, also joined concert and used their wonderful talents to perfectly reproduce the scenes from Shakespeare's play.
Before attending this concert, I did some research about the background information of the Shakespeare's work. I think it benefited my concert experience dramatically because it does not only helps me understand the lyrics, but also enable me to feel the emotions these performers trying to express. I think if I do not know anything about Shakespeare, I would totally lost my ability of appreciation, and the twenty dollar ticket would went wasted. Among all the pieces presented during the concert, there were two that attracted me the most; they are Felix Mendelssohn's Midsummer Night's Dream and Is It for Fear to Wet a Widow's Eye from George Shearing's Shakespeare collections. .
Shearing was a renowned Jazz pianist, and his invention of the 'Shearing sound' remains popular and widely cited in the music circles in the modern day. The sonnet he played, 'Is it for fear to wet a widows eye', was a smooth cocktail jazz, which was characterized by the block chords that are played on the piano as well as the chords of similar nature played on vibraphone. Because of his deep knowledge of the piano as well as an extensive listening of recorded jazz music, he played previously in many areas.