Every now and then, popular culture uses classical themes to promote what they have produced. UMKC’s Conservatory did a rendition of one of those pieces of music during a Senior Recital on Saturday evening, featuring “Flight of the Bumblebee for Two Oboes” (1899), by Nikolai Rimsky-Korsakov. The UMKC players performed the piece remarkably well, along with the other music they produced that evening.
The first offering was by Emile Paladilhe, 1844-1926. It had a modern yet classical sound to it. There was frequent interaction between the piano and the oboe. Dan Velicer played the piano and Ashleen Atchue played the oboe for the piece. Both pulled it off effortlessly.
The second piece was unique piece of music in of itself. It was written by Henri Tomasi (1901-1971), a more modern composer. It had 4 movements, the first two of which were in French – Peruvienne (Peruvian) and Nigerienne (Nigerian). It was also a solo effort by Atchue, as she gave a polished performance of the overall piece.
Frantisek Krommer (1759-1831) composed the third selection, with three movements to it. The piano, by Velicer, had frequent mini-solos in the piece, while the oboe, played by Atchue, was remarkable. The piano especially changed in immensity throughout the piece.
The last, aforementioned piece of music, “Flight of the Bumblebee for Two Oboes” (1899), was performed with two oboes and an English horn by Cassandra Goodwin. The performers were dressed in a way that resembled bees, especially by use of their head accessories. The piece was stunningly quick, comprising of only a minute or so in duration.
Professor Celeste Johnson of the UMKC Conservatory was simply pleased, especially with the last selection of music.
“The Flight of the Bumblebee capped off the recital with a bit of wit and humor,” she said enthusiastically.