by Evan Kory –
Note Bene: soprano Elena Galbraith, flutist Sandy Schwoebel, and pianist Marie Sierra presented a charming program of 19th century parlour music in period dress—their thoughtful program was designed to give their audience the experience of hearing the lost tradition of popular parlor music in an intimate setting.
Historically the works they performed, everything from Rossini and Weber to Scott Joplin and Arthur Joyner, were presented in small-town opera houses. With each piece, they performed they painted the picture of a different time, a period that produced spellbinding songs of sentimentality and longing. With Elena’s performance of Harry von Tilzer’s “A Bird in a Gilded Cage”, we were transported to 1900, the year the song debuted and was a major sensation. It was very special to experience a lost musical art form infused with so much poetry in the warm atmosphere of the Opera House.