Author: Meizhu Lui

I’ve never seen so much plucking since I visited the chicken farm. Most string pieces don’t involve the plucking technique, but the Carr-Petrova Duo seems to have found those that do. I’m teasing! I take that liberty because it seems like that would be ok with this young-at-heart pair, who prove that you can be laid-back and candid about your creative process while at the same time being consummate artists. They are more than a “duo,” two musicians who play together. They are obviously dear friends; on the stage, Molly Carr, the violist, kept turning to Anna Petrova, the pianist,…

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What’s it like to be a family with three generations of classical guitarists? There’s never been such a family – until the Romeros. Because his sons became guitar masters, Spanish guitarist, composer, and ambassador of classical guitar Celedonio Romero created a new musical entity:  a classical guitar quartet. They became known as “The Royal Family of the Guitar.” The quartet is now in its 60th year, the first 30 with Celedonio and his three sons Ángel, Pepe, and Celin, and the next 30 with grandsons Celino and Lito replacing Celedonio and Ángel. But despite their nickname, the family does not act…

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Most of us think of classical pianists as serious types, practicing alone, studying mostly dead composers, interacting only with other musicians, all day, every day. That would not be Alpin Hong. Even very young classical musicians seem adult-like. Not Alpin Hong. He’s an adult in age, but still a kid with kid interests, like skateboarding and video games. That makes for a very refreshing and fun performer! At his January 14 concert at Kahilu Theater, Alpin demonstrated his extreme-sport approach. He’s focused, risk-taking, athletic, coordinated, inventive, and having a great time. If you’re on a skateboard, you must be one…

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Tomorrow, Tomorrow, I Love Ya, Tomorrow! It’s funny how “tomorrow” all too quickly becomes “today.” For those of us who have been fans of the Hawaii Performing Arts Festival (HPAF) and the Kahilu Youth Troupe, we’ve already seen the stars of tomorrow become the stars of today – including HPAF’s multi-talented Executive Director, Justin John Moniz, himself an HPAF alumnus. HPAF’s Stars of Tomorrow post-high school performers must have inspired their younger co-cast members. They, like us, could see and hear what extra years of practice and coaching can achieve. Becca Barrett and Daniel Gregg were original members of the…

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Classical music is full of dance tunes: gavottes, minuets, gigues, pavanes; because the music was written for the entertainment of wealthy aristocrats, and their parties often included dancing. The Galliard was a French Renaissance dance in which the man shows off his prowess with leaps and flourishes, like birds who strut their stuff to win their fair lady. The Galliard String Quartet, true to its name, has a light, lively, virtuosic style which imbued all three of their selections for their recent Kahilu TV concert. They take more liberties with tempo than most classical groups, allowing the listener to savor…

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“Angels We Have Heard on High:” the image of angels playing heavenly music on harps has been with us since Biblical times.  But the harp is even older than Christianity. It is thought to be over 3000 years old, seen on the walls of Egyptian tombs. For centuries, the harp has had a special place in Irish tradition; it led warriors into battle and became the national symbol of Ireland. Given such a long and storied history, with its exalted place among royalty, religions, and nations, it is no wonder that harps are capable of transporting the listener to other…

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