PEORIA -- Wow! What a piece the St. Martin Chamber Players presented at a Jan. 30 concert, at the First English Lutheran Church.
It was Concerto in G minor for Organ, FP 93 by Francis Poulene -- perhaps the inspiration for the opening organ number in the popular musical Phantom of the Opera by Andrew Lloyd Weber.
This 1938 Poulene concerto was flashy and exciting, with interesting dissonance made even more spectacular by the organ, played by Sherry Seckler.
The other numbers in the concert were also quite interesting, from Vivaldi and Mozart rescored for horns to Pacific Coast Highway, a 1994 classical piece for guitars, played by BUG, or Bradley University Guitars.
Soprano soloist Beverly Stenoish sang the 27.Alleluia from Le roi David, H 37 by Arthur Honegger, another impressive piece and performance.
Edith Barnard did a nice job as narrator, e.g. announcer for the various pieces.
This was a lovely, professional-style concert for a dreary Sunday afternoon by the St. Marin Chamber Players, a non-profit group dedicated to the performance of music for small ensembles. The event was free, though donations were suggested. Such events make Peoria a good place to live.
-- Elaine Hopkins