Chamber Players

Williams Chamber Players

Doris Stevenson, Artistic Director

Ronald Feldman, cello; Joana Genova, violin; Carl Jenkins, oboe; Keith Kibler, baritone; Susan Martula, clarinet; Doris Stevenson, piano, Victor Sungarian, horn; Stephen Walt, bassoon; and Elizabeth Wright, piano

The Williams College Department of Music presents the Williams Chamber Players in concert on Friday, Sep. 9, at 8 p.m. in Brooks-Rogers Recital Hall on the Williams College campus. This free event is open to the public.

The  opening concert of the fall concert season promises myriad delights. Leading off the program: The Piano Quintet in E flat Major K. 452 by Wolfgang Amadeus Mozart, featuring Carl Jenkins, oboe; Susan Martula, clarinet; Stephen Walt, bassoon; Victor Sungarian, horn; and Elizabeth Wright, piano. Mozart wrote to his father that he thought this was his finest work ever.

Keith Kibler, bass-baritone joins pianist Doris Stevenson for a group of American songs  which Kibler describes as “direct and simple.” Copland’s setting of American songs, Mancini’s beautiful Moon River, a William Blake song of Virgil Thomson, and an ancient ballad are included.

On the second half of the concert  pianist Doris Stevenson brings together two colleagues, Joana Genova, violin and Ronald Feldman, cello, to perform the Trio in E minor, opus 90 by Antonin Dvorak. Also known as the “Dumky” trio, the piece reflects Dvorak’s fascination with Slavic folk music. “Dumky” is the diminutive form of a Ukrainian word for a Slavic epic ballad, thoughtful or melancholic in character but Dvorak’s “Dumky” constantly shifts in mood from pensive to wild and exuberant. Dvorak wrote this trio just before coming to the United States where his mission was to convince American composers to use the folk materials of their country in their music.

The Williams Chamber Players is a resident chamber ensemble, founded at Williams College in 1999. Its purpose is to present concerts for the college and community throughout the academic year. Antecedents of the Williams Chamber Players are The Williams Trio, founded in 1970, and the Group for 20th Century Music, founded in 1989. Repertoire for concerts is drawn from the standard chamber music repertoire with special attention to music of the 20th and 21st centuries, and to music by Williams composers. Musicians are normally drawn from the ranks of Artists-in-Residence, Artist Associates, and other faculty, as well as occasional visiting artists.