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Geoffrey Hopkins in concert: Beethoven piano sonatas

first_imgA programme consisting solely of Beethoven’s piano sonatas promised to be a challenging recital, but also a very rewarding experience for any pianist or listener.  The concert was performed by Oxford resident, Geoffrey Hopkins, at the Jacqueline du Pré Music Building, St. Hilda’s College, on 18th January.  Despite containing music written by solely one composer, the recital was very varied.  Hopkins chose three sonatas, which were written at different stages of Beethoven’s life, and therefore differed greatly in style.    The opening sonata (Sonata in C major, op.2 no.3) was written in the early years of Beethoven’s compositional career and demonstrates the influence of early-classical period composers such as Mozart and Haydn.  Hopkins’ rendition of this sonata began wonderfully, with an expressive melody-line and secure finger-work.  The chords throughout were generally well balanced, although some of the larger chords lacked emphasis on the top line, and thus perhaps felt a little heavy for the style.  The third (Scherzo and Trio) movement was particularly enjoyable, although could perhaps have been a little more energetic, since some of the ‘bounce’ of the music was lost in the scalic passages.  The second sonata Hopkins played (Sonata in F minor, op. 57,‘Appassionata’) contrasted greatly with the first piece.  Hopkins seemed to enjoy the later, more romantic style, and this was evident in his performance. The tone was appropriately warm throughout all three movements of the work, and the first movement displayed some particularly impressive technical playing.  Hopkins’ performance of the ‘Appassionata’ sonata was particularly warmly received.    The final piece was Beethoven’s Sonata in C minor (op. 111).  This is the final sonata that Beethoven wrote for piano, and contains some unusual harmonies and chromaticism.  Again, Hopkins’ playing was striking and very stylistically fitting; the second movement was particularly beautiful and expressive.  Overall, Hopkins’ playing throughout this concert was convincing and technically assured, and the programme well chosen.  However, the concert perhaps deserved a more lively encore than that chosen by Hopkins.  After the intensity of the final two sonatas, a playful Beethoven scherzo or Schubert impromptu may have been more appropriate a conclusion than the slow movement from Beethoven’s G major sonata (op. 59).  In general, however, the audience was very impressed by Hopkins’ performance.    by Sarah Blackfordlast_img read more

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Ocean City Veteran, Fred Little, Travels to Washington DC as Part of Honor Flight…

first_imgOcean City resident and Korean War Veteran Fred Little toured military monuments throughout Washington, DC courtesy of The Honor Flight Network. Ocean City resident and Korean War Veteran Fred Little’s military service was celebrated on June 5th when he traveled to Washington, DC courtesy of The Honor Flight Network, a non-profit organization that transports America’s veterans to visit memorials in the capital city.Little served in the US Air Force from 1953-1957, followed by two-years in the Army Reserve, reaching the rank of Staff Sergeant in the Air Police. He was stationed at Rushmore Air Force Station in South Dakota, where the Atomic Energy Commission maintained and stored atomic weapons. He held a “critical top secret clearance.”Ocean City’s Frank Hetzel (left), a member of Ocean City American Legion Squadron 524, served as Fred Little guardian on his odyssey to Washington, DC.This is the eleventh year that Honor Flight of Southern New Jersey has sponsored a veterans trip to Washington. Activities began at The Northfield Middle School, where students from the National Junior Honor Society held bake sales each month to raise funds for a limo bus.“We are very proud of the students, citizens, and Veterans from our area who work so hard to make each Honor Flight a success,” said Mary Ann Devine, 7th grade teacher and National Junior Honor Society Advisor at Northfield Community School.Fred Little pauses to reflect at The Korean War Monument.The vets were next transported to Williamstown High School, where they were greeted with a police escort. The vets returned to Williamstown, following their Washington visit, for dinner and “mail call” (letters from family, friends and civic leaders) thanking them for their service.“The participation by the students from Northfield and Williamstown was unbelievable,” said Little. “They waited on us totally. It gives me such faith in the younger generation.”Honor Flight of Southern New Jersey veterans gather for a group photograph in Washington, DC.Once in Washington, the vets toured The WWII Memorial, The Korean War Memorial, The Viet Nam War Wall, and the Iwo Jima Memorial. The day’s events began at 5:30 AM and concluded when all vets returned home aroun11:00 pm.“In addition to his military service, Fred Little is a founding member of Ocean City American Legion’s Sons of the American Legion Squadron 524,” said Legion Commander Bob Marzulli. “In his youth, Fred earned the rank of Eagle Scout, proving that community and national service is a lifelong quality.”Fred Little poses with a military honor guard at the New Jersey WWII Monument.For more information about honoring veterans, contact:Honor Flight, Inc. 175 South Tuttle Road Springfield, OH 45505Honorflight.orgKorean War veteran Fred Little by the reflecting pool of The Washington Monument.last_img read more

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GMEDC Names New Executive Director

first_imgJoan Goldstein has been named the new Executive Director of Green Mountain Economic Development Corporation (GMEDC). Goldstein comes to the position after several years as a Business and Technology Advisor for the Vermont Small Business Development Center and as an adjunct accounting, economics, and small business management instructor for Community College of Vermont and the Vermont Technical College.  Joan previously conducted business for herself as an eBay selling consultant and she also brings a wide perspective from her 20 plus years in the financial services industry with international sales, marketing, client and project management experience. She has an MBA in Finance and an undergraduate degree in Economics.Her predecessor, Neal Fox, has left to pursue his many other interests, including serving on the Board of Directors and the Executive Committee of GMEDC.GMEDC is a nonprofit corporation committed to the development of businesses and communities of the 33 town region of the Upper Valley of Vermont. This area entails Orange and Northern Windsor Counties. If you want to hear more about the services and programs of GMEDC, please call 802-295-3710 or visit out website at www.gmedc.com(link is external).last_img read more

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Alleged car thief remanded

first_imgA Tucville, Georgetown resident, who was earlier this week reportedly found with a stolen car parked in front of his home, was taken before the Georgetown Magistrates’ Courts.Kevin Jordan, 29, of Perry Street, Tucville, denied that he received the stolen silver Toyota Allion motor vehicle valued $2.2 million on May 5, 2018, from Vladimir David.He told Chief Magistrate Ann McLennan that he was unaware that the car was stolen. He disclosed that a friend parked the said vehicle in front of his property.Jordan relayed that he even took Police to the same friend’s residence however he was not found at home when they went there. He was nonetheless remanded to prison. The case will continue on May 11.last_img read more