4 City College Music Department faculty members still have the beat

Four City College Music Department’s faculty wowed the crowd when they played to an almost full crowd at a noon concert in the Little Theater.

Host and adjunct professor Nancy Salerno Lower called the concert “a journey through musical history.”

Quite the journey it was as each pianist played his or her selected pieces to what sounded like perfection.  The approximate 40-minute concert featured pieces by famous composers Johann Sebastian Bach, Frederic Chopin, Franz Liszt and Victor Young, as well as two self-composed pieces by faculty members Reggie Graham and Richard Clinger.

Lower began the show with Bach, giving a brief background about the composer and the choice of music.  Each one of the pianists gave the audience some related information on the music and composer they played.

Virginia Electra was the second faculty pianist. She played a piece from Chopin’s “Nocturne In C Minor Opus 48 No. 1.”

Clinger, who has been at City College since 1980, was the third in the line of performers. He played two pieces of music. The first was a piece by 19th century composer Liszt, followed by Clinger’s own work “Impromptu” which he composed at 16 years old.

“The dude that composed his own was excellent,” student Naomi Nagasawa said of Clinger.

The final pianist was Graham and his trio. They played “Stella by Starlight,” a piece by 20th century American composer Victor Young.  Graham’s trio was sharp. The song sounded as if it was being played in a 1950s San Francisco jazz bar.

Graham’s self-composed piece titled “Lasting Impression” was lively and fast-paced.

According to Graham it is a piece of music he began composing in 1994.

Graham’s trio had Graham on the piano, Lem McEwen on drums, and former City College student Brandon Kendricks strumming the bass.

“Lasting Impression“ was rhythmic and contained a hint of speed.

The Bach and Beyond noon concert did not disappoint. It was upbeat, entertaining, and informative.

“The hope is that there will be more faculty music recitals in the future” says Lower. “We do have student recitals all the time with the student ensembles.”

Lower indicated that since so many teachers also compose, a faculty recital of original works would be something that she would like to do in the future.

“It’s so hard to get the faculty together,” Lower said. “I’d like to have an original composition recital for the teachers.”