By Chris Ricci
If you’ve stepped foot in Salem this month, you can definitely tell that there’s something spooky going on. Yes, there are the massive lines for local staples, and yes there are fleets of people sporting tiny witch hats. But, outside of some of the more pop-centric scary scenarios in the city, there’s just a very different air in Salem during this time of month.
Few genres of music evoke a stronger sense of emotion then that of the classical genre. It’s safe to say that virtually the entire basis for the way the music industry carries itself today is because of the impact classical music has had for centuries. In more recent years, there’s been a sudden revival of interest in classical music, and Salem’s own Salem Classical is combining this with the eerie air of October to produce their latest performance.
Songs of the Supernatural features local soprano Kate Kostopoulos and pianist Brendon Shapiro reinterpreting some of history’s more hauntingly beautiful classical arrangements. Featuring the works of Schulbert, Liszt, Menotti, Rorhem, and more, the tales woven by these composers feature a wide array of themes; ranging from the classic tale of the siren Lorelei overlooking the river Rhine, to the tale of Princess Danae, who was locked away in a room made of bronze. The efforts behind Songs of the Supernatural are simple: proving that the Witch Trials are not the only instances of persecutions fixated on paranoia surrounding supernatural events.
Kate Kostopoulos is a Boston based performer that has had an illustrious career with vocal performances. Kate recently earned her Master of Music degree in Vocal Performance at the Cleveland Institute of Music, and was also featured at this year’s Atlantic Music Festival. Brendon Shapiro is a Boston based pianist, vocal coach, musical director, and conductor. Currently a staff pianist at Boston University, Brendon holds a Master of Music degree in Collaborative Piano Performance from BU as well as a Bachelor of Music Degree from Ithaca College School of Music.
Salem Classical’s usage of the Old Town Hall as a space for their work has added a more intimate air to the performances over the years, and the central location only adds to the majesty that is the arts-based heritage of Salem. Salem Classical works tirelessly to remove the boundary between those preforming and those attending in an effort to not only make concerts more frequent and enjoyable, but to also serve as a major compliment to all the experiences Salem has to offer.
As the month winds down and the focal holiday marches closer, it’s only natural to have an urge to engross yourself in the haunting air that draws ever closer. Salem Classical’s Songs of the Supernatural promises to be a very deep exploration into the macabre through a timeless genre of music that fits perfectly into Salem’s Halloween air.
Links to photos: http://www.salemclassical.com/gallery.html
Salem, MA, October 25, 2015. Salem Main Streets and Salem Classical present the Salem debut of Songs of the Supernatural at the First Church in Salem, on Friday, October 30, 2015 at 8:00pm, featuring dark and haunting pieces by Schubert, Berlioz, Liszt, Menotti, Lees, and Rorem, with soprano Kate Kostopoulos and pianist Brendon Shapiro.
Creative advocates Creative Salere the media partner for this series. Creative Salem fosters all aspects of the local creative economy.
A siren haunts a rock on the river Rhine.
A princess, locked away in a Bronze Room.
A charlatan conducts sham séances.
A teenage girl, driven to suicide by cruel fate...
The Salem Witch Trials are not the only persecutions fixated on the supernatural. Explore dark magic and tragic heroines, set to hauntingly gorgeous music by Schubert, Berlioz, Liszt, Menotti, Lees, and Rorem, with soprano Kate
Kostopoulond pianist Brendon Shapiro.