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Here you will find reviews, previews, artist profiles, and opinions about music in 2021. This publication will highlight musical activities in Oberlin and Greater Cleveland, as well as regionally, nationally, and internationally.

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This project was recently featured in the Oberlin Review! Read the article, written by managing editor Kate Fishman: The Updraft Publishes Dynamic Music Journalism.”

Concert Preview: Erika Aoki Senior Recital

The semester may be coming to a close, but there is another concert yet on the Oberlin horizon. On Sunday May 2 at 2:30 pm, violinist Erika Aoki will present four distinctive works on her senior recital, a live-streamed concert when she hopes audiences will be able to virtually enjoy the musical collaborations as they take place onstage.

Three of the four works feature collaborative musicians: pianist Leo Choi on Benjamin Britten’s Suite, cellist Drew Dansby on Maurice Ravel’s Sonata for Violin and Cello, and pianist Natsumi Osborn on Ravel’s Sonata No. 2. Aoki will also perform Eugène Ysaÿe’s solo Sonata No. 5. 

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An Homage to Classical Guitar

Italian guitarist Emanuele Buono

How well does the guitar, a plucked instrument, play works designed for other instruments? On Saturday, March 20th, the Cleveland Classical Guitar Society streamed a performance by Emanuele Buono as part of their International Series. In the 50 minute pre-recorded concerte, Buono answers this question with arrangements of works by Bach and Schubert.

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Dana Jessen and Stephan Haluska at the BOP STOP, April 2nd, 2021

The combination of the bassoon and harp is one you might least expect to hear improvising together. Dana Jessen and Stephan Haluska defied those expectations Friday evening, April 2, as they presented an hour-long set on the BOP STOP livestream stage. Both classically trained musicians, the bassoonist and harpist have since directed their career towards new music and improvisation, experimenting with extended techniques. Indeed, with its high musical expression and visual persuasion, last week’s performance demonstrated how the capabilities of the bassoon and harp reach far beyond the classical music tradition.

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More Than Another Song About Tokyo

Rina Sawayama: SAWAYAMA Album Review | Pitchfork

What does it mean to be out of place? Where do you call home when you’ve been traveling your whole life? Who are you if you’re always trying to be something else? These questions have no obvious answer but Japan-born and UK-raised Rina Sawayama does her best to do so in her debut 13 track album SAWAYAMA, released in April of 2020.

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