'Suite Antique' concert features new harpsichord

Classical music lovers will delight in a special performance of composer John Rutter’s “Suite Antique” on Sunday, March 13, at 4 p.m. in the West Shore Unitarian Universalist Church sanctuary. The concert is free and open to the public. Masks are required.

The Suite is part of the church’s B. Neill Davis Concert series, featuring high-profile talented musicians for the public’s enjoyment. Beth Elardo returns to West Shore on flute joined by the Amethyst String Ensemble under the guidance of Mary Beth Ions. 

David Blazer will play a special harpsichord, donated to the church by member Sherry Cica in honor of her beloved husband, Dan, a 34-year church member who died in 2011.

“This concert will be the inauguration of the Dan Cica Harpsichord,” said David Blazer, Director of Music. According to Blazer, Dan built this harpsichord himself from a harpsichord kit from the Zuckermann Harpsichord Company in New York. It is a single manual Italian style instrument. The church owns another smaller instrument which is one of the first "kits" the Zuckermann company designed and was called a "Z box."

Blazer explained that the kit concept became so successful that Zuckermann expanded to offer kits for a variety of sizes and styles of harpsichords. “So, I  guess you could say that our ‘Z box’ instrument is the grandfather, and the new Dan Cica instrument is one of the grandchildren,” remarked Blazer.

Contemporary composer John Rutter is a much-respected English composer, choral conductor, arranger and editor. Born in London in 1945, he was educated at Highgate School, then studied music at Clare College, Cambridge. Rutter, who still lives near Cambridge, continues to conduct choirs and orchestras world-wide. He is an honorary Fellow of Westminster College, Princeton, and a Fellow of the Guild of Church Musicians. The Archbishop of Canterbury conferred a Lambeth Doctorate of Music upon him in 1996 in recognition of his contribution to church music.

According to Blazer, Rutter’s Antique Suite is made up of six movements ranging from a "Bach-like Aria" to a "Richard Rodgers style Waltz."

“Rutter’s own style comes forth most strongly in the final ‘Rondeau’ with its characteristically forward-driving rhythms and beautiful melodic lines. Evoking an ‘antique’ spirit, each movement is based on a Baroque or Classical style,” said Blazer.

For more information, contact the church office at 440-333-2255. West Shore Unitarian Universalist Church is located at 20401 Hilliard Blvd in Rocky River.

Dorothy Richards

20+ year member of West Shore Unitarian Universalist Church. Assistant Programs staff.

Read More on Arts & Entertainment
Volume 14, Issue 5, Posted 10:28 AM, 03.01.2022