Sunday….the day of rest….is what one would normally think, but, Sunday at an international music festival means more concerts! We awoke for a morning concert at Chiesa di San Giuseppe. This concert was put on by Eliza Garth on the Pianoforte performing 20th century works by Debussy, Cage, Cowell, and Satie. After this concert we had no composition class as the campus building was closed on Sunday. I was feeling a bit under the weather, so I rested until the midday concert that was also at Chiesa di San Giuseppe. This concert was a flute ensemble performing a wide variety of works including the notable ‘Flight of the Bumblebee’ by Rimsky-Korsakov. It’s not very often that you get to see bass and contra-bass flute in concert, so I found it very enjoyable. Afterward we had dinner at the Vin Café, which was a notable experience, because, as I went to pay the bill for our table the café music was playing Tubular Bells by Mike Oldfield which is most definitely not what one would consider ‘popular music’ but is a piece that I enjoy thoroughly nevertheless. For the evening concert, we made our way to the Chiesa di San Domenica for the chorale concert. I was really looking forward to this one, as I found out that they would be performing a couple of pieces by Eric Whitacre, whom I really admire. Sure enough, the concert turned out to be my favorite thus far and Cloudburst by Eric Whitacre even brought tears to my eyes. A standing ovation warranted three brief encores that were simply ‘best of’ moments of the concert. It was a grand performance indeed.
I slept in this morning until shortly before our composition lesson. On this day, Robert Gibson spoke to us and showed us a handful of his pieces. I learned very quickly that I really liked his style of composing, mainly his affinity for strong, yet short pieces. After the lesson, I went to ‘the flagship’ and grabbed a toast (which, in Italy, is a grilled ham and cheese sandwich) and some acqua naturale (water). After this, we prepared for the afternoon concert at Chiesa della Maddalena, which featured the Siren Woodwind Quintet performing works by Bozza, Poulenc, Ligeti, and Robert Gibson (yes, the same one from earlier). Afterward a few of us and several of the St. Mary’s students went out to a pizza place in town. Naturally, I had to order something unusual and so my pizza had pepperoni, ham, salami, mushroom, and egg on it. I hadn’t heard of egg on a pizza before, but, it sounded good and I was not disappointed. The evening concert consisted entirely of movie music performed by classical guitar, flute, and string trio. It was yet another great variety of music to add to the already wide selection in the festival.