Sarah Saviet Performs at Mishkan Torah
Sarah Saviet’s parents are members of Mishkan Torah Synagogue. She studied music at Peabody Preparatory in Baltimore and has just completed her Performance Diploma studies at Indiana University. She has won a number of competitions including Indiana University concerto competition and National Symphony Orchestra’s Young Artists Competition. Recently, she received both a Fulbright Scholarship and a German grant to begin a three year course of study for her masters degree at the University of the Arts in Berlin. Before she leaves for Germany next Wednesday, she gave a recital at Mishkan Torah this past Sunday afternoon.
Jeffrey Rosen, master of ceremonies, opens by saying that for the Jewish culture “the most important of the senses probably is sound.” The prayer Shema Yisrael means “Hear, O Israel,” and the poem Haazinu in the Torah means “Give ear.” “If there is one instrument which really touches the Jewish soul, it’s the violin. I tried to think today but I never, ever heard a musical called French Hornist on the Roof.” He mentions several famous Jewish violinists including Itzhak Perlman, David Oistrakh, Jascha Heifetz, and Nathan Milstein. He then introduces Mishkan Torah’s own prodigy Sarah Saviet.
Sarah Saviet tells that she met today’s pianist Simone Baron at her high school senior recital and has since kept in touch. She introduces Johannes Brahms’s Sonata in G major, Op. 78 and says that Brahms wrote this piece shortly after the death of his godson Felix Schumann. Felix was the youngest child of Robert Schumann, the great composer, and his wife Clara with whom Brahms had a long, complicated relationship. “This work embraces the dual feelings of melancholy and tenderness, perhaps a sort of nostalgia,” Saviet writes in the program booklet.
Sonata in G major, Op. 78 by Johannes Brahms (1833-1897)
The pianist is Simone Baron who is currently a student at the Oberlin Conservatory. Turning the pages for her is Mishkan Torah’s Ben Greenfield.
Saviet introduces the next piece by Elliott Carter who was born in 1908 and has published more than 14 works since turning 100 in 2008. “He thinks of his pieces as scenarios with different musical characters.” This one for solo violin has three characters.
This one is titled “Riconoscenza per Goffredo Petrassi.” Goffredo Petrassi (1904-2003) was an Italian composer. “Riconoscenza is a schizophrenic study for solo violin.”
Other musical pieces performed during this recital include Inscriptions by Shulamit Ran (born 1949, an Israeli-American composer), Nocturne by John Cage (1912-1992, celebrating his centennial this year), Solo Sonata Op. 27, No. 5 by Eugene Ysaye (1858-1931, “one of the greatest violinists ever”), and Tzigane by Maurice Ravel (1875-1937, “a finicky Frenchman’s take on Hungarian gypsy music”).
Jeffrey Rosen presents a flower bouquet to pianist Simone Baron.
Rosen hands Saviet a card from the synagogue.
Sarah Saviet reads the card aloud: “Dear Sarah, You have graciously shared your talent with us. This is our way of saying thank you for all that you have done. You have brought much joy to our congregation. We wish you every success in your new musical adventure.” It’s a gift card for Amazon. “I can buy a video camera to tape my performances from now on.”
Saviet shows a pin which has just been presented to her by Mishkan Torah Sisterhood.
One of two chocolate cakes that say “Bon Voyage Sarah”
Sarah Saviet poses for a photo.
Saviet signs a program.