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International Chamber Music Festival

By Sandy Lugo
On September 28, 2012

In order to demonstrate the talent of the music professors at Texas A&M International University, the Fine and Performing Arts Department hosted a music festival on Sept. 21, at 7:30 p.m. in the Recital Hall.

The event started with Patorale by Jack H. Mckenzie, performed by Dr. Susane Berdahl, who is an orchestral flutist, and Dr. James Moyer, director of band and percussion studies at TAMIU. I was surprised by how much talent our TAMIU professors have and realized that this same skills will be transmitted to their students. The next melody, played by Dr. Yu-Mei Huang in the violin, an assistant professor of upper strings, and Brendan Townsend in cello, the director of music program at TAMIU and the Laredo Philharmonic Orchestra, was Passagalia. Either for extra credit or for cultural absorption, I was surprised by the students' support towards their professors. The third performance was showcased by Dr. Berdhal and Dr. Xioahu Zhou, the director of LA-RE-DO Music Academy. Many times this kind of concerts are popular among musicians and not the general public, but if students and the community take a night to go and appreciate the talent brought to this stage, they would be amazed of how many instruments they might be introduced to and all kinds of music played.

The continuing melody was from Don Pasquale, Act I: played by Dr. Fritz Gechter, an associate professor of music and piano, sang by the collaboration of Dr. Joseph Crabtree, a voice and opera instructor in Laredo Community College, and Dana Crabtree, a lyric coloratura soprano. I could see how much they enjoyed this performance and how much fun they had. Portraying a romantic comedy, the audience and I laughed and enjoyed the performance which made the audience applaud the great acting. To conclude the concert, guest artist Rebecca Anderson, who maintains a private piano studio, played Galop de concert by Wilhelm Ganz with pianist Fritz Gechter, along with Dr. Yu-Mei Huang and Dr. Xiaohu Zhou on a different piano. This melody was played on two pianos with four hands. This was the first time I had seen a piano played by two people at the same time. It was incredible how two pianos were played together by four people.

The night was full of energy and excitement; it was amazing to see how these feelings from the stage were passed on to the audience. Through these performances, the professors reflected the passion they have for music. All professors wore elegant clothes, and they looked very professional.

For more information, you may contact the Fine and Performing Arts Department at (956) 326-ARTS

(Sandy Lugo may be reached at

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