Recital gives small sound for small crowd

Performers and crowd attendance fall short during second Student Recital


Experience • Cathie Lawrence

Vocalist Amber Griego performs Mariah Carey’s “My All” during the Student Recital in the Recital Hall Tues. Dec. 2.

Showcasing various vocal and musical styles, the LMC Music Department held a free Student Recital Dec. 2 in the Recital Hall highlighting four students enrolled the program. While the performers did fairly well in each of their pieces, the small amount of attendees seemed to affect the stage presence of those in the spotlight.

Opening the recital, Raphael Raynor took to the stage to perform Sammy Fain and Paul Francis Webster’s “Love Is a Many-Splendored Thing,” but with no microphone to boost his vocals, his quiet tone made it difficult to hear the words during some points in the song, often being drowned out by the natural sounds of the piano accompaniment.

Following Raynor’s performance, attendees watched as student Jessica Motta wheeled out a marimba, a percussion instrument similar to a xylophone, for her instrumental version of Harold Arlen’s “Somewhere Over the Rainbow.” Although her performance of the song made famous by Judy Garland in the “Wizard of OZ” was done quite well, with no foul notes or soft hits heard, it seemed as though she struggled with what was coming next, often interrupting with the overall flow of the piece. Still though, her ability to transpose the melody to an instrumental percussion piece was impressive.

Next up, student Xavier Johnson treated the audience to his version of the classic “Cheek to Cheek,” the popular song by Irving Berlin written in 1935 for entertainers Fred Astaire and Ginger Rogers for the film “Top Hat.” Johnson did a great job with the song, adding his own jazzy feel and accenting his stage presence with small dance steps and hand gestures. Still though, whether it was the lack of an audience or the pressure of performing solo, it seemed as if his performance could have been strengthened by an added boost of confidence. But in his defense, even the pros still get nervous.

To close out the recital, with an ability to show a variety of range both tonally and dynamically, student Amber Griego walked to the microphone to sing Mariah Carey’s “My All.” Although amplification was needed for her well-sung quieter verses, her vocals at some point were too much for a microphone and tended to be a little overpowering. However, with more practice I’m sure ability to project her voice in all ranges will call for no need for additional amplification.

At just over fifteen minutes in length, it seemed that more performers could have been added to create a longer event. Perhaps this could also help boost attendance, something that always affects the performance of any entertainer. Overall, although short and lacking a comfortable feeling by the performers, the recital was an entertaining way to spend a little time in between classes on a rainy afternoon.