Hugo Bryan Castillo
Soprano Melissa McIntosh Landis took center stage and gave the audience a taste of her powerful voice as she sang a collection of animated musical pieces Feb. 11 in Founders Auditorium.
La Verne’s pianist Timothy Durkovic was her accompanist.
“I was excited to see her perform,” said Jennifer Cantero, a sophomore music major. “She’s very engaging as a performer, adding a lot of emotion.”
McIntosh Landis, a native of Kansas City, Kan., moved to California in 1996 and recently joined the voice faculty at ULV.
She is a voice professor at Mt. San Antonio College as well.
Her recital, titled “Voyage,” featured a variety of musical pieces.
The recital included French and English musical works, including a piece about four recipes.
Patricia Reilly of San Dimas, said she felt that the selections for the recital were unusual.
And they were, without a doubt.
McIntosh Landis took each selection and made it her own by adding humorous animation.
Her first piece, “La Bonne Cuisine,” by Leonard Bernstein, features four recipes: Plum Pudding, Queues de Boeuf (Ox Tail), Tavouk Gueunkis and Civet a Toute Vitesse (Quick Stew).
The lyrics were definitely unorthodox for they included such lines as, “250 grams of Malaga grapes, 250 grams of Corinth grapes…250 grams of beef kidney fat and 125 grams of bread crumb.”
The piece was fast in tempo and composed in a major key.
“I enjoyed the Bernstein piece,” said Cody Smith, a junior music major. “It was very humorous and different.”
McIntosh Landis’s favorite piece to perform was “Trois Melodies,” by Erik Satie.
After seeing her perform this number, one understood why she enjoyed performing it.
McIntosh Landis was very witty and vivacious.
Her comical facial expressions imitated the actions present in the lyrics and music.
She took the music and made it her own comic relief.
One could not help but smile. She is a natural performer with great stage presence.
“I loved the way (McIntosh Landis) can act, and watching her be animated was fun,” Smith said.
Some other pieces she sang were Samuel Barber’s “The Hermit Songs,” Gustave Charpentier’s “Dupuis le Jour” and William Walton’s “Three Songs of Edith Sitwell.”
Durkovic played the piano majestically and McIntosh Landis was great in using a variety of voice ranges.
At the end, they both received a standing ovation.
“Together they have a lot of creativity,” Smith said. “They work great together. It was a good balance.”
“Voyage” was definitely worth exploring.
For more information on upcoming concerts, visit www.ulv.edu/music.
Hugo Bryan Castillo can be reached at email@example.com.