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Concert Review: Le Salon De Musiques' November Concert

Candice Helen Hakimfar |
November 14, 2011 | 3:58 p.m. PST

Staff Reporter


Le Salon de Musiques is a grand classical music performance playing at the Dorothy Chandler Pavilion in Los Angeles. The concert on Nov. 13 featured F. Schubert's Sonata and Grieg's Cello Sonata Opus 36 in A minor. The concert seated about 100 people in a living room-like hall.

The idea of Le Salon de Musiques is inspired by Marie Antoinette, who sought out a classical music concert series in more private settings for professional concertgoers. The audience members are two arms' length distance away from the musicians, so they are able to not only hear the beautiful sounds flowing through the room, but can also see the expression on the musicians' faces, witness the stroke of every hand movement, and hear the masterful caresses of each musical dynamic.

The two pieces contrasted each other in many respects. Shubert's Sonata, a traditional three movement piece, flowed smoothly, while Grieg's piece, in stringent time, sounded complex yet graceful. 

The interaction between the piano and the cello sounded like a love-hate relationship; sometimes the piano would raise its voice at the cello, invoking the cello to reply with a sweet whisper.

The concerts take place on one Sunday each month through May 20. The performance is accompanied by champagne, food by Patina and informal conversation introduced by musicologist Julius Reder Carlson. A question-and-answer session followed the concert.

One instrumentalist said, "In a standard musical performance, the musicians are so far from the audience. They don't feel the energy of the musicians and in return the musicians cannot feel the energy of the audience."

The instrumentalists also emphasized the importance of selecting poignant pieces. "In order to master a piece," said cellist Antonio Lysy, "the musician must digest a piece, listen to the piece, get comfortable with the dynamics, play it for a week or two, memorize the piece, and most importantly convey the emotion that the composer wants to share with the audience." 

Reach reporter Candice Helen Hakimfar here.

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