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   Classics Revisited - October 13th, 2007


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Classics Revisited with Sinfonia Mexicana
By Frances Scoggin, Correspondent

Sinfonia Mexicana presented the Inland Empire with another wonderful evening of fine music and entertainment on Oct. 13 at the beautiful California Theatre. The concert was titled "Classics Revisited" and consisted of classical music of Mexico and the incomparable Vikki Carr.

The concert opened with the San Bernardino Symphony, conducted by Maestro Frank Fetta, performing selections by some of Mexico's finest classical composers. Works by Lara, Oliva, Rosas and Moncayo were represented. The orchestra played these with fine control or flashy technique depending on what was needed. The rhythmic intricacies of the "Huapango" by Moncayo were played with perfection showing off all sections of the orchestra - especially the trumpet.

The more melodic waltzes in Viennese style by Rosas and Lara were played with elegance and class showing just how beautiful this music can sound when played well. Oliva's arrangement, "Suite de Lara," showed the variety of styles used by this versatile composer. Especially well played were the hot trumpet licks in "Granada."

Maestro Fetta did an excellent job interpreting the many different styles of music and provided informative commentary on each piece. He was in control at all times but allowed the musicians the freedom to express themselves. He seemed to enjoy the music as much as the audience did.

After intermission, the immensely talented and classy Carr took the stage. She was accompanied by Maestro Fetta conducting a fine back-up band with the string players from the San Bernardino Symphony, two wonderful backup singers, and her music director, Andy Howe, at the piano. Carr mentioned that he won his job with the comment, "It's all about the music."

His arrangements showed off her many vocal talents. Each song showed her excellent dynamic range and impeccable technique. She sang blues, jazz, country and Spanish love songs with ease, packing the emotional punch that a lesser artist would have to work to deliver. Even her signature pieces, "It Must Be Him" and "Can't Take My Eyes Off Of You," sounded just as fresh as ever. It was obvious that Carr loves singing and sharing her gift with her audience.

Sinfonia Mexicana has been fostering awareness of Mexico's rich history of music for 22 years. For this, they have received an award from the James Irvine Foundation. Congratulations and viva, Sinfonia Mexicana!


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