"Three and a half stars
University of Indianapolis Faculty Series; Christel DeHaan Fine Arts Center, Nov.12.
For the last Faculty Artist Recital of 2007, the U. of Indianapolis once again presented an interesting program theme: duos. Francis Poulenc’s Sonata (1918) for piano featured Richard Ratliff, and one of his students, Allegra Sorely, both sharing the keyboard. I was very much impressed with Sorely’s musical abilities, and then upon reading her bio, was shocked to find she is only a junior in high school. Glenn Kwok, violin, and Ratliff then played one of Wolfgang Amadeus Mozart’s more dark and grave sonatas, Sonata in E minor, K.348. Throughout this two movement work I got the sense that Kwok was always probing deep for meaning, and that gave this work a feeling of authenticity. The evening ended in a major key, with Ceasar Franck’s distinguished Sonata in A. While written for violin and piano originally, this evening we heard it transcribed for flute. As good a flautist as Jody Sowers is, this work does not lend itself well to this transcription. The flute was unable to provide the intensity and sincerity needed for this piece to come off well, despite its best intentions.