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Chatham, New York
Local culture
3 August 2021 12:08AM

On Saturday, August 14th and Sunday, August 15th, BKO Chamber Music is presenting Ron Carbone, violist, Margaret Flanigan, mezzo-soprano, and me (Uel Wade), pianist, performing a potpourri of mostly 20th century composers.

Both performances are scheduled for 3 pm in my spacious Chatham NY studio-for-live-audiences.

The program puts aside the 20th century in-crowd who tended to throw out the musical baby with the bath water. The composers in this program are a few of the intrepid souls who dared the rescue.

They saved the baby. They dried her off with a kind of creativity that retrieved past sounds and mixed them with their more modern explorations. This they did even as they were ignored or disparaged by academic types.

To remind us of our roots, Carbone and I will begin with two joyful 18th century pieces by W. F. Bach, Sebastian’s eldest son. Then they will play part of a Darius Milhaud Suite based on 18th century themes. (This composer, who felt that diatonic music had disintegrated, found a way to use the old chords by combining two keys.)

Though he died in obscurity, Paul Juon was a masterful Russian composer whose style reminded people of Brahms. Carbone and I will play his rich “Sonata in C minor,” full of passion and beautiful Russian melodies.

The English composer Frank Bridge worked within conventional, Romantic idioms. Carbone and I will be joined by mezzo soprano Margaret Flanigan (twice awarded a Uel Wade Music Scholarship prize) to perform “Three Songs” based on Romantic poetry.

In a departure for BKO, Flanigan and I will offer a set of dramatic songs from Broadway’s abundant 20th century storehouse, including works by Sondheim, Arlen, and Gershwin.

Tickets are $25 (free for 18-and-under). I urge you to reserve early to hep me prepare the space. Send a check to Uel Wade at 40 Church St., Chatham NY 12037. If you can’t plan ahead, you may pay at the door. Seating will be conventional (at last!), thanks to the prevalence of regional vaccinations. Masks are optional if you’re vaccinated, required if you’re not.

Come on in.The water’s fine. The baby thrives.

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