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I went to theFIU Music Series at The Wertheim on November 27, 2017, to watch the StringChamber Ensembles. These talented students of the FIU School of Music stringensembles are coached by the American String Quartet, violinists RobertDavidovici and Marcia Littley, and FIU’s Ensemble-in-Residence.They performedvarious masterpieces from the chamber music repertoire. I was impressed by howthey were playing and how all the instruments came into unison.

One songcomposed was “Sonata #1 for Violin and Piano in D major, opus 12” by Ludwig vanBeethoven. The music isperformed at a fast pace or tempo as directed with the word allegro con brio.For this song, Helen Hauser played the violin and Louise Hutchison played thepiano. The song is in sonata form and has 3 movements. The sonatas could bedifficult to understand for some people. “Being lost in a forest” is aphrase used to describe how it feels to listen to them. The first movement of Sonata #1 has a kind ofoffbeat accents that could affect the shifts. I could see that Ludvig van Beethoven changes one of the sections to Fmajor.

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The second movement is a flattering theme in A major with four differentvariations. The piano leads the first variation, and the violin leads thesecond. The third variation is in the parallel minor with utterly unexpectedturbulence. And the final variation stresses syncopation. Now, the finalmovement is a powerful Rondo blasted through with disrupted cadences andexplosive accents. Beethoven brings back the harmonic development of the firstmovement and provides two fake endings. Many people criticized these threepieces for their unusual style. This piece lasted about a good 20 minutes andit was worth it.

 Another song composed was “String Quartet No.2in F Major, Op.92” by Sergei Prokofiev. This song has a tempo of AllegroSostenuto. Izak Kertznus performed the song playing the flute and BiancaTavares playing the violin. Also, Sarah Bossa playing the viola and ElishaMartin playing the bass. Prokofiev used Kabardino-Balkar folk themes in hisstring quartet while still using his style. The echoing of percussions identifiedthe style of folk music.

The firstmovement gets started with a folk dance, then a violin came and sung the folksong. The other members played the accordion in mimicry while that was goingalong. The movement continued into a lot of syncopation. The second movementuses a love song that was announced during which one of the instruments wereplaying.  Also, the background accompanimenttries to imitate a Caucasian stringed instrument. The third movement opens richand varied. It is based on an energetic mountain dance.

Two interludes arefollowed by an agitated development that isstarted by a cello cadenza. A recapitulation of themes from two precedingmovements. This string quartet lasted for about 25 minutes.

The interestingpart is that Prokofiev was told by a government official to write a quartetusing Karbardino-Balkar folk themes, and this is the string quartet thatresulted in variations in themes and folk dances. Another song composed was “String Trio in EFlat Major, Op.3 “by  Ludwig vanBeethoven. The song has a tempo of Allegro con brio.  José Luis Reyes performed the song playingthe violin, Francesca Rossi playing the viola and Sada Walkiria Adam Moralesplaying the cello. There are six movements in total for this piece. The firstmovement is the most interesting out of the entire Trio.

The song has a texturethat is scattered to a performance between a violin and cello. The second movementis an exchange with three instruments that each play equally a four-note part.It gives the melody part of the movement.

The first Minuet is short while thesecond Minuet is more expansive. The final movement is in Rondo form. Theconcert overall was very interesting. The musicians played their instrumentsvery well.

I liked it a lot. All the audience were into it. The musicians were spot-on. They sounded like they put somany hours in to perfect their craft. I was so glad that I didn’t waste my time.

I was happy that I did go and learn so many new things. To actually hear allthe instruments, play and how they blended in so good was amazing.

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