House Plants >> Tempe Edition
The evening of Friday, May 6th was a unique and lively occasion, brought to you by moi and my beautiful & creative peers in Tempe, AZ. PressPlay (Demi Johnson, Carly Bates, Mike Pfister, and myself) opened the night with covers of Erykah Badu, Amy Winehouse, and Elliott Smith plus one original tune "Medicine Song", all of which offered a smooth and improvisatory overture to the night to come. (All photos by Olivia Moonitz)
After everyone was snuggly settled in our small yet inviting living room, Sarah Off took the stage, performing three movements from a contemporary solo violin piece entitled "Old Campsites of Predecessors" by Kohei Kondo. This piece, and its execution, was enchanting to say the least, conjuring images of crackling flames and timeless day dreams.
Kristi Hanno stole hearts with an original work for solo clarinet, that, at times was so soft and delicate, listeners had to lean in to hear the tender multiphonics quickly to spring back at the dramatic flourishes in upper registers and upper volumes. I was thoroughly impressed and inspired by Kristi's tactical approach, giving a sense of utmost precision, clarity, and musicality.
Group four on the bill was THE Flute Quintet (still nameless I believe, but extraordinarily memorable nonetheless) presenting handpicked movements of Misericordia for Flute and String Orchestra by Yuko Uebayashi. So successful was their playing, that listeners demanded movement after movement until nearly all ten were performed (though out of order, as dictated by Olivia Lemmelin, Emilio Vazquez, NaYoung Ham, Gillian Kuroiwa and Sarah Knight).
To close the night, the impromptu duo, Milliams & Benquist (Matt Williams and Ben Hedquist) brought some truly improvised jazz to the room, including uncharted renditions of standards plus two of Matt's very own: "The Sanctity of Morning No. 1" and "Expectations".
I felt so privileged to hear the combined music of two of my biggest inspirations from the past two years in my very own living room! In fact, that goes for everyone who played! And to those who came and listened, thank you! Music in this setting is only made possible by community and friendship, heart and soul, food and drink, and of course, love and respect. I hope to generate more and more chamber-music-house-shows for years to come, and I hope that YOU will be a part of it! XOX