Faculty Recital Showcases Talented Musicians

Saint Mary's music faculty staged a recital in the Chapel on Sept. 23 that displayed their outstanding talents in a wide range of works. A large audience of students, faculty, staff and visitors members nearly filled the Chapel for the performances during the College's Community Time.

Mori Achen, a classical guitarist who has performed in solo and chamber recitals throughout the Bay Area, played "Decameron Noir" by Leo Brouwer, one of Cuba's most important composers. The piece is based on love stories from Africa.

Anthony Striplen, clarinet, and Pamela Freund-Striplen, viola, performed "Prelude and Allegro" by Rebecca Clark. Anthony Striplen, a faculty member at Saint Mary's since 2005, has been a member of the San Francisco Opera Orchestra for nine years, and earlier was the principal clarinet with that company's touring arm, the Western Opera Theater. Pamela Freund-Striplen teaches violin and viola at Saint Mary's and is artistic director of the Gold Coast Chamber Players. The two musicians are active recording artists who have worked on numerous films.

The College's Artist-in-Residence, bass/baritone Louis Lebherz, sang an aria from Wagner's "The Flying Dutchman." Lebherz, who directs the NightinGaels and teaches voice, has performed in the Royal Opera House, Covent Garden, the Kennedy Center and elsewhere, and has directed and co-produced seven operas with the Redlands Bowl Summer Music Festival.

Dawn Foster-Dodson, who is frequently the princiapl cellist of the Best of Broadway theatrical productions at the Orpheum Theater in San Francisco, performed Jerome Kessler's "Kol Nidrei," the name for the evening service that begins Yom Kippur, in honor of the Jewish high holidays. Foster-Dodson, who joined the music department in 1998, played for 23 years with the San Jose Symphony.

Patric Hambelton, flute, and Foster-Dodson, cello, played Hilary Tann's "Llef," which is a Welsh word meaning "a cry from the heart." Hambelton, who has been on Saint Mary's music faculty since 2005, performs with the Berkeley Symphony in their Music Education Program and was principal flutist for the Arch Ensemble in both concerts and recordings, touring with the ensemble throughout the United States and Europe.

The recital ended with a flourish, as pianist Lino Rivera played an excerpt from George Gershwin's "Fantasy on Porgy and Bess." River, who was born in the Philippines and won his first national competition at age 8, has performed as a solo recitalist, concerto soloist and accompanist on three continents. River chairs the performing arts department, but maintains an active solo career. He will perform Lizst's "Piano Concerto No. 2" with the California Youth Symphony in the Bay Area this December, and Brahms' "Piano Concerto No. 2 with the CSU Sacramento Symphony Orchestra in May 2010.

-- Erin Hallissy

Office of College Communications