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  News 2007 
MfB's third season sets new standards of performance

MfB's third season of Masterclasses and Summer Schools set new standards of music performance in the area and left our growing regular audiences ecstatic about what they came to hear. Povilas Stravinsky, concert pianist of wonderful ability, joined Elvira and Alfia Bekova in summer 2007, all the way from Seattle.

The Comune in Citerna had very kindly put in a proposal to have I Solisti di Perugia - a noted local chamber orchestra - perform with Povilas, Alfia and Elvira as soloists for the opening concert of the season. Thus, a superb concert was given in the recently restored courtyard of the Comunal palazzo, which has excellent acoustics. The programme included the 1st Piano Concerto (BMV1052) by Bach, Haydn's Cello Concerto in D major and Mozart's 5th Violin Concerto (KV219) performed wonderfully well by the three soloists together with the orchestra.

A total of five concerts were performed by the maestri over the twelve-day period, two of which included course participants. This had the effect of creating a small festival. The sad death of Rostropovich in 2007 was honoured by Alfia and Povilas in their splendid cello and piano recital which included works by Mozart, Beethoven, Debussy, Schedrin, Schumann and Prokofiev.

Elvira's violin and piano recital - also with Povilas - included works by Tartini, Ravel, Debussy and Wienawski, a virtuoso performance indeed. A fourth concert was held in the chapel of a former convent at the kind invitation of the owners and saw the debut of a young violoncellist attending the course, Calum Hopkins, to the evident delight of Alfia, his regular teacher. In addition, a gifted amateur clarinettist (Joseph Rosen) who joined the course to perform Beethoven, Brahms and Bartok repertoire with the professionals, played Schumann's Fantasiestucke with Povilas and the difficult Trio for Clarinet, Violin and Piano by Khachaturian, with Elvira and Povilas.

The final concert as usual involved the members of the course together with the professionals. "Regalo per Citerna" (Gift for Citerna) closed the 2007 season and included Mozart's Clarinet Quintet played by Joseph with Peter Hopkins, Alfia, Elvira and Elvira's daughter Aciel on second violin. Once again this intensive short season had lived up to its growing reputation and sent the course participants home with a real sense of achievement.


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