SEUNGHEE LEE “SUNNY” at THE CELL, FRIDAY, FEBRUARY 22

Not only is Seunghee Lee and her production company Musica Solis co-producing the series “Classically Exposed: From Carnegie Hall to The Cell” with me, she is also performing on March 27 with the Manhattan Chamber Players and JP Jofre.  But you can hear and meet “Sunny” this Friday, February 22 at “The Cell” when she performs with Empire Wild, a brilliant young group of musicians. This is a free event but you must reserve a seat, which you can do by contacting me at charles@crhproductions.com

A little about Sunny: She was included in the “Top 30 Under 30” by KDFC San Francisco radio. Her albums were chosen as “CD of the Week” and her music is performed on classical musical stations around the world, including WQXR here in NYC. She has collaborated with Deepak Chopra and with renowned Italian film composer, Andrea Morricone, performing his world-premiere arrangement of “Love Theme” from Cinema Paradiso for clarinet and orchestra.

“Now here is a talent… who has a warm, silvery, and woody a tone as anyone could imagine with fast and keen finger work to match… amazing expressive capabilities… positively lovely” – Review by Allmusic.com 

RENATO DIZ and YURI JUAREZ at THE CELL, FRIDAY, FEBRUARY 22nd.

On April 28th Charles R. Hale Productions and Musical Solis will present guitarist Yuri Juárez and pianist Renato Diz performing timeless works from the classical repertoire and rearranging them for piano and guitar with improvisation sections (Jazz!), as was popular during the 16th, 17th and 18th centuries.

Want to get a preview? Join us this Friday night, February 22nd, 7:30pm at The Cell when you’ll hear music from four of the seven events that will comprise “Classically Exposed: From Carnegie Hall to the Cell.”

This is a free event but you must reserve a seat by sending an email to charles@charlesrhaleproductions.com

Hope to see you Friday.

Renato Diz and Yuri Juarez

“FROM CARNEGIE TO THE CELL” with CHARLES R. HALE

What have been the greatest performances in Carnegie Hall’s storied history? Which famous musicians and singers have performed there? What great works have been debuted in one of the most revered music halls in the world? 

This is the kind of project I love: Mucking around Carnegie Hall, researching its history and its music. 

I’m really looking forward to presenting this show at “the cell,” which is called “From Carnegie to The Cell,” and is the last show in the Charles R. Hale Productions/Musica Solis Series, “Classically Exposed: From Carnegie Hall to the Cell.”

I’ll be narrating Carnegie’s history, joined by a great group of musicians who will be performing some of music’s most revered works.  Mark your calendar…December 6, 7:30pm. Hope to see you there. 

Charles R. Hale and Carnegie Hall

MEMORIES AND HOPE THROUGH A DIGITAL LENS at LEHMAN COLLEGE

I love this poster created by Professor Joseph McElligott. It’s being used to promote my short films, discussion of family and ancestral history, and the impact that New York City had on my family and me. The event is at Lehman College this Thursday, Feb 14, 12:30pm. 

The afternoon is sponsored by the City and Humanities Program, which is chaired by Professor McElligott. It will take place in the Studio Theatre, which is located in the Speech and Hearing building.

This is a free event. For directions to Lehman click here

CLASSICALLY EXPOSED: FROM CARNEGIE HALL TO THE CELL

Clockwise from top left: Nicole Zuraitis, Yuri Juarez, Seunghee (Sunny) Lee, Charles R. Hale, Clare Maloney, Empire Wild, Renato Diz

Recently, “the cell theatre asked me if I’d create a classically themed series for 2019. I jumped at the idea. I asked international recording artist and clarinetist, Seunghee Lee (Sunny) to collaborate with me and together we’ve put together a seven-event season (below), beginning on March 27. 

Additionally, on February 22, 7:30pm there will be a free performance during which you will be able to sample the music of four of the shows and mingle with the performers (photo above) after the event. Tickets for each of the series’ shows will be $20. A subscription for all seven shows will be $100, which, I’m sure you’ll agree, considering the talent we’ve assembled, is a great bargain. (Ticket and subscription sales will begin shortly.)

This won’t be a typical “Classical” series. This will be classical music with a twist. For instance, one show will feature guitarist Yuri Juarez and pianist Renato Diz performing timeless works from the classical repertoire and rearranging them for piano and guitar with improvisation sections (Jazz!), as was popular during the 16th, 17th and 18th centuries.

Another show will feature Nicole Zuraitis—recently nominated for a Grammy—and Clare Maloney. Both Nicole and Clare began their musical pursuits as aspiring opera singers but segued from opera to jazz and pop. Their show will highlight their many talents, including the performance of well-known arias and their pop tune adaptations. 

I hope to see you there. Here is a listing of the events:

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Nancy Manocherian’s the cell presents a Charles R. Hale Productions/Musica Solis Series

CLASSICALLY EXPOSED:  FROM CARNEGIE HALL TO THE CELL”

February 22:  Fundraiser

March 27:  Season Opener…Seunghee Lee and the Manhattan Chamber Players with special guest, JP Jofre. Works by Mozart, Weber, Brahms and Jofre 

April 26:  Yuri Juarez and Renato Diz: “From Classical to Jazz”

May 10:  Verona Quartet “An Outstanding Ensemble…” New York Times

June 28:  Clare Maloney and Nicole Zuraitis: “From Opera to Pop”

September 27:  Ji in and Wayne Weng, “From Classical to Pop to Hip Hop.”

October 18:  Empire Wild “From Bows to Beats

December 6:  “From Carnegie to ‘the cell with narration by Charles R. Hale and live music, featuring historical Carnegie Hall performances 

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The cell is located at 338 West 23rd St in the Chelsea section of Manhattan. 

 

CHARLES R. HALE PRODUCTIONS PRESENTS: IMPRESSION at THE CELL

Charles R. Hale Productions Presents: Impression…Ravel and Debussy.
In celebration of the centennial of Debussy’s death, IMPRESSION will explore the erotic languor of French Impressionism by weaving the chamber music of Debussy and Ravel with the poetry of Stéphane Mallarmé. Debussy’s seminal Prelude to the Afternoon of a Faun, for Boulez the beginning of modern music, will serve as the focal point of the performance, presented here in a new octet arrangement for the first time in New York.
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Mallarmé: The Afternoon of a Faun
Ravel: Introduction and Allegro
Debussy: Première Rhapsodie [octet arrangement by Todd Palmer]
Debussy: Prelude to the Afternoon of a Faun [octet arrangement by Graeme Steele Johnson] — New York Premiere
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Graeme Steele Johnson, Artistic Director and clarinet
Matty Oaks, reader
Ji Weon Ryu, flute
Hannah Lash, harp
Adelya Nartadjieva and Rachel Loseke, violins
Matthew Cohen, viola
Ari Evan, cello
Jordan Calixto, double bass
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Wednesday, December 12, 8pm at The Cell Theatre, 338 West 23rd St, New York, New York.  Doors open at 8:15
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ARTISTRY & THE ARTIST:SEUNGHEE LEE. REVIEW by VINCENT NAUHEIMER

Artistry and the Artist by V. Nauheimer

Last night, Seunghee Lee opened Charles R. Hale’s 2018 series “Thoroughly New York.” She was an unequivocal success.  

Ms. Lee, a brilliant clarinetist, is a storyteller like Charles, who enhances story through musical performance.  Effectively handled, there is a synergy in which the narrative and the music become greater than the sum of their parts. What made this show different is that Ms. Lee was both the musician and the storyteller, engaging the audience with her humor, life experiences and carefully selected musical scores to punctuate each story. It made for a richly rewarding experience. 

Ms. Lee played her clarinet with ease and grace, but her performance went far beyond her immense musical skills. She shared an inspirational story of how she’d arrived at this time and place in her life and how she’d wrestled with her love for music and roles as a clarinetist, a mother and wife. At one point she described a moment in her life when in despair, she gave up her music, but turned it into a humorous moment by flashing a photo onto the screen of her clarinet, in her home, with a lampshade over it. Ms. Lee explained that even though she wasn’t actively using it at that point in her life she did not want to let it go. Clearly, the world is richer because Ms. Lee came back to her clarinet.

Ms. Lee opened her show with an Elgar piece that is very dear to her, Salut d’Amour Bravo, (Salute to Love) She explained how the piece was written for violin, but because of her love for the work, she became the first clarinetist to record it. It was a pattern that she would repeat often, which included producing a book containing sheet music for the clarinet called “Hidden Treasures.”

Ms. Lee also regaled us with tales of her love of golf even comparing it to music, noting that each discipline required,  “practice, practice, practice…” as well as finding a good teacher, having fun and developing a good rhythm and tempo. To punctuate the story, she played Gabriel Faure’s 1893 piece, Sicilienne, which she stated gave her a sense of freedom and wonder while she played golf.

As the evening progressed, it was clear that little held back Ms. Lee. When it came to performing and her love of her instrument…anything was possible. Nothing underscored that more than her two Puccini arias “O Mio Bambino Cara” from Gianna Schicchi and “Nessun Dorma” from Turandot. I’m an opera fan, but hearing these well known arias performed as clarinet solos was a richly rewarding experience. While Sunny performed, accompanied by pianist Evan Solomon, it would have been impossible not to hear Kathleen Battle or the great Pavarotti, whose signature song was Nessun Dorma, singing these arias.  Quite riveting. 

The most moving moment of the evening was Ms Lee’s tribute to her father, who was taken from her in a most unfortunate and untimely manner. To honor his life, which included introducing her to the clarinet, as well as instructing her, Ms. Lee performed her father’s favorite song, “Danny Boy.” The soul and emotion she put into the song was a magnificent tribute. The audience was on the edge of their seats, the emotion palpable.  

I’d never experienced a classically trained musician of Seunghee Lee’s talent, combine superior musicality and riveting storytelling. A novel concept, superbly crafted.  It was an exceptional evening and if this is a portent of things to come, I await the next performance in this series, “Thoroughly New York,” with great anticipation

Photos by Mitch Traphagen

ARTISTRY & THE ARTIST: SEUNGHEE “SUNNY” LEE, WEDNESDAY at THE CELL

 

Seunghee Lee, “Sunny”

TICKETS FOR SEUNGHEE LEE ON MAY 16  CLICK HERE.

“Now here is a talent…  who has as warm, silvery, and woody a tone as anyone could imagine with fast and keen finger work to match… amazing expressive capabilities… positively lovely” – Review by Allmusic.com

Seunghee Lee is a multi-faceted musician, international recording artist, and musical entrepreneur, Seunghee (Sunny) brings a vivacious energy, an exquisite elegance and extraordinary precision to all her endeavors. Ms. Lee has been recognized by the Clarinet Magazine as “an uncompromising soloist, destined to be an upcoming contender of top stature”.

Sunny’s 2017-2018 season included a tour of northern Italy performing the Mozart Clarinet Concerto, visiting professorship at Yale School of Music, and a Sold-Out debut recital at Carnegie Hall. An advocate for exploring new ideas, embracing all musical genres, one of the greatest highlights was her collaboration with DEEPAK CHOPRA on his new album & book: HOME: Where Everyone is Welcome, a collection of thirty-four original poems and twelve songs inspired by a diverse group of immigrants.

Click here to listen to Sunny performing “Gabriel’s Oboe” with composer Andrea Morricone, who is also the composer of the “Love Theme” from Cinema Paradiso, which you can hear Sunny perform here.

Join us for, “Artistry & the Artist, a great night of music and storytelling.  TICKETS FOR SEUNGHEE LEE ON MAY 16  CLICK HERE.

YURI JUAREZ’S AFROPERUANO BAND at THE CELL THEATRE: PHOTOS by VERA HOAR

Yuri Juarez’s Afroperuano Band, which includes pianist Renato Diz, drummer Hector Morales, bass guitarist Moto Fukushima, cajon Freddy Huevito Lobaton Beltran and vocalist Sofia Tosello, performed in brilliant fashion at the fourth in Charles R. Hale Productions’ series’, “New Yorkers: Together in Story and Song.

Here are photos from the event that were taken by Vera Hoar.

Yuri Juarez and Sofia Tosello

Sofia Tosello

 

Renato Diz, Freddy Huevito Lobaton Beltran, Moto Fukushima, Yuri Juarez, Hector Morales

Charles R. Hale

Martha Pinson and Hector Morales

John Moran and Friends

Freddy Huevito Lobaton Beltran

Hector Morales and Moto Fukushima

Renato Diz

 

PIANO VIRTUSO HARRIET STUBBS at THE CELL by VINCENT NAUHEIMER

The following was written by Vincent Nauheimer:


In an ongoing effort to present multicultural artistry and international talent, Charles  R. Hale  Productions’ “New Yorkers: Together in Story and Song” featured English pianist Harriet Stubbs at the Cell Theatre last Thursday. This was the third show of a six performance series.

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Ms. Stubbs, who was recognized as a child prodigy, has a well-deserved reputation and a lengthy repertoire of both individual and collaborative works. Her solo performance at the Cell Theatre last Thursday was at once riveting, nuanced and fresh, as she soared through four warhorses of the piano repertoire.

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Ms Stubbs opened the recital with the Bach-Busoni, Chaccone in D Minor. The Chaccone is regarded as one of Johann Sebastian Bach’s violin masterpieces;  Busoni’s piano transcription has long been recognized as a splendid interpretation of Bach’s work. Ms. Stubbs played this dramatic piece with the insight it deserves,  delighting the audience with her musicality and talent, accentuated by her intensity and expressiveness.

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Ms. Stubbs followed the Chaccone with Alexander Scriabin’s Sonata No. 2, Op 19, one of Scriabin’s most popular works. Scriabin’s sonatas are known as technically difficult works and Ms Stubbs was up to the task, bringing her vast technical skills to the piece, while capturing the very distinctive “voice” of Scriabin’s music.

Ms Stubbs final work of the first section of the program was Frederic Chopin’s Scherzo No. 2, which composer Robert Schumann compared to a Byronic poem, “so overflowing with tenderness, boldness, love and contempt.”  Ms. Stubbs successfully articulated the full range of Byron’s emotions.

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After a short intermission, Ms Stubbs performed the Dante Sonata/Fantasia Quasi Sonata by Franz Liszt. During the piece, commonly believed to be based on Dante’s Inferno, Ms. Stubbs took the audience on a musical journey, deftly navigating the works emotional highs and lows, which served to highlight her prolific talent. The rousing work induced a well deserved standing ovation from the audience.

Photos by Tom Myles and Mitch Traphagen