Newspaper article Charleston Gazette Mail

REVIEW ; Time for Three Pleases W.Va. Symphony Crowd

Newspaper article Charleston Gazette Mail

REVIEW ; Time for Three Pleases W.Va. Symphony Crowd

Article excerpt

When Time for Three, violinists Zachary De Pue and Nicholas Kendall and double bassist Ranaan Meyer, burst on the scene in the early 2000's, it was an outlandish concept. The two violins, set high in the range, are separated sonically from the rumbling depths of the double bass' range. String ensembles have tended to have the cello and/or viola included to bridge that gap. Except the bass, with its long strings, can reach very high notes. That high sound is sort of like a cello, but hollower and darker.

Meyer spent much of his time exploring that high range strikingly in the ensemble's pleasing concert with the West Virginia Symphony, Saturday night at the Clay Center. The concert was the final pops concert of the orchestra's current season.

A mash-up of music by Richard Strauss, Rimsky-Korsakov, Mozart and Saint-Sans set up humorous introductions for each player.

Eleanor Rigby featured lyricism from the trio and an easy conversation with the orchestra. The segue into Blackbird came with Kendall and Meyer playing flecks of high harmonics (harmonics are made by touching the string lightly while drawing the bow lightly, producing a note much higher than normal). De Pue played a richly colored version of the melody on his lowest string. Meyer picked up the tune, in the bass high range, playing sweetly, before the orchestra drove the music to a climax. The quiet harmonics came back to bring it to a close.

Percy Graingers Irish Tune from County Derry had Meyer taking the melody and playing it in his high register with a warm, haunting tone. The violinists took the middle phrase, playing sweetly in their top range.

Oddly, Steve Hackmans arrangement added a second climax to Graingers original. The result was a bit clumsy.

Whelans American Muse had faux-rustic fiddling at a breakneck pace. The balance between the trio and the orchestra was uneven so that it was hard clearly to hear what the trio was playing. …

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