Dale Barltrop recital

It was a dark and stormy night, well really more depressing and gloomy than stormy, and it really was the afternoon, but I was lucky, I was hearing some great music for free.

See the SPCO is really supportive of their musicians, and they were hosting a recital by Dale Barltrop at the SPCO Center. He performed three pieces with Mary Jo Gothmann accompanying him on piano.

  • Tartini-Violin Sonata in G Minor, The Devil’s Trill arranged by Kreisler
  • Ravel-Sonata for Violin and Piano
  • Beethoven-Sonata for Piano and Violin, No. 7 in C Minor, Op. 3 No. 2

I learned of this recital as a member of Club 2030, which is still the best deal in town. Remember this will allow someone who is between 20 and 39 years old to purchase up to two tickets for SPCO concerts at the Ordway for the low cost of $10 per ticket for best seat available. Obviously, this week, we saw another benefit of it, a chance to get free tickets to this recital.

At the concert we learned that the two target groups were Club 2030 and long time subscribers, I am not sure about the threshold to be targeted as a long time subscriber (I am probably in the 10-11 year range) because I didn’t hear of it that way. I did notice a number younger people in the audience, which is good, as we need to develop the connections and relationships so they will become the future concert-goers. It was nice of Dale to refer to the long time subscribers as friends and family, and I really think that the SPCO has that feel with its more intimate presence, Daryl Skobba’s farewell concert was a great example of it as I have written before.

Now onto the recital, the first piece, The Devil’s Trill was so enjoyable. It is a very fast paced piece and Dale and Mary Jo played it very well. I have seen this piece earlier this year when Joshua Bell played it for his Schubert Club recital.

The Ravel sonata was very nice also, but my friends and I agreed, that the piano part of the sonata was more enjoyable than the violin component. This is not a critique of Dale’s playing, just how the piece is written. There are jazz elements to this piece and they are especially notable coming from the piano in the 2nd and 3rd movements.

After intermission, the Beethoven sonata was another very good piece, but a little more serious and somber than the earlier two, but it has me considering looking into maybe picking up these sonatas on CD.

We did get one encore, I didn’t quite catch the name of it, something with Slide in it. Dale said he didn’t want the recital to end on such a serious piece, so he played this very energetic and enjoyable piece.

Mary Jo Gothmann has played in the chamber series before, I think just before Christmas, maybe even on a Ravel piece, and after that concert I remember Dale raving about her skill then. I think they make a good team.

But wait, there is more! Not only did we get to hear this lovely recital on a gloomy afternoon, but there was a reception afterwards. We got some small desserts and punch, plus a chance to chat with the musicians. Dale was the man of the hour, very much in demand, always a line to talk with him.

He really is a good ambassador, as are most the musicians I have chatted with over the years, as he took time to talk with everyone and thank them for coming. I find that ironic as we were the ones that should have been thanking him for allowing us to see such a good recital.

I did learn two things, one that Dale is 27 years old, the e-mail to Club 2030 mentioned his youth. Which means that he was 22 or 23 years old when he joined the SPCO in the 2003-2004 season. The other thing I learned is they have selected the violist to sit in the Alice Preves Viola Chair, the name he mentioned was Maiya, since I didn’t ask for last name, I have to guess that she is the Maiya Papich who has performed with the orchestra occasionally this season.

If you want to listen to The Devil’s Trill you can buy it at Amazon, Great Recordings of the Century with David Oistrakh on violin and Vladimir Yampolsky on piano is very affordable at $7.97. Or better yet, you can go see Dale perform it May 1-3rd. It will be a little different than what I saw, as they will play an arrangement that is for violin and orchestra. I will be at one of those concerts.

me and Dale

-Josh

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