Pianist Grisha Krivchenia stopped off at Mount Shasta on June 2 as part of his spring tour which has included Colorado, New Mexico and the Bay Area in California and will continue in Oregon and Washington.
Pianist Grisha Krivchenia stopped off at Mount Shasta on June 2 as part of his spring tour which has included Colorado, New Mexico and the Bay Area in California and will continue in Oregon and Washington. He told the audience that he loves coming to small towns and proceeded to share with us a most impressive and emotional concert.
He opened the program with an original piece entitled, “Passacaglia.” Krivchenia elaborated on the meaning of passacaglia, which is -"The passacaglia (/pæsəˈkɑːliə/; Italian: [pasːaˈkaʎːa]) - a musical form that originated in early seventeenth-century Spain and is still used today by composers. It is usually of a serious character and is often, but not always, based on a bass-ostinato and written in triple metre.”
Fluid emotional lines and a theme brought out by the left hand were featured in this moving piece.
He followed with the Sonata in A minor by Franz Schubert. Krivchenia told the audience that this was his favorite Schubert composition and that it was rarely heard. It was a special treat to hear this sometimes dark romantic sonata in three movements.
Krivchenia went on to Chopin’s Scherzo in Bb minor, Op. 31. No. 2. He stated that scherzi (the plural of scherzo) are often known as joke songs - a little more playful and fun. However, this was Chopin and there was no joke. He went on to perform flawlessly earning a long standing ovation at the end of the first half.
The second half proved to be emotionally satisfying. He began with Beethoven’s Sonata No. 18 in Eb major, Op 31 - 3. One of the very few sonatas that have four movements - Allegro, Scherzo, Menuetto, and Presto con fuoco, and this time the Scherzo was playful and even humorous. This piece contained no Andante (slow) movement, which is very rare in sonatas. Yet, the Menuetto was a moderate cantabile, and very melodic. The final movement, Presto con fuoco, was lively and joyful –and a perfect tribute to spring.
Krivchenia's final piece was an original entitled, “Farewell Song.” He told a little history about it. He wrote it for a funeral service for a young man, age 20, who had died from suicide.
The piece was so well received that Krivchenia asked if the crowd wanted to hear another and an audience member said, “Please do another original.”
At that point he performed “End of Suffering.” It was recorded and can be viewed on Music by the Mountain’s Facebook page.
Music by the Mountain is a non-profit organization that brings outstanding classical musicians from all over the world to Mount Shasta and Siskiyou County. For more information on this organization, please see our page on Facebook or see their website: musicbythemountain.org.