'TUTTI CELLI' Newsletter



    |    www.cello.org



\ _/    'TUTTI CELLI' Newsletter, July/August 1997

TUTTI CELLI CONTENTS -- volume 3, issue 4

New Members' Message 2500 members from 58 countries!
ICS News and Announcements
Burger King boycott called off
John's Jabber Resignations
Letters to the Editor
New and Old Member Letters

Featured Artist

Feature Article

ICS Award Website of the Month


ICS Forum/ Cello Chat Board
Cello related movies
Prokofiev Symphony-Concerto
Jazz on Strings
Professional hints
Cello Penpals
Music Festival Watch
ICS Library and Reference
Activities and Announcements Opera gig in Germany
Other Internet Music Resources Posture Peg for Cellists


Welcome Puerto Rico, Slovenia, Uruguay and Zimbabwe to our list of countries, making 58. Countries represented by our membership include Argentina, Australia, Austria, Belgium, Brazil, Canada, Chile, China, Columbia, Costa Rica, Croatia, Czech Republic, Denmark, Dominica, Finland , France, Germany, Greece, Guatemala, Hong Kong, Hungary, Iceland, Indonesia, Ireland, Israel, Italy, Jamaica, Japan, Latvia, Luxembourg, Malaysia, Mexico, Netherlands, New Zealand, Norway, Philippines, Poland, Portugal, Puerto Rico, Romania, Russia, Serbia, Solvenia, Singapore, South Africa, South Korea, Spain, Sweden, Switzerland, Taiwan, Thailand, Turkey, United Kingdom, Ukraine, United States, Uruguay, Venezuela and Zimbabwe.

The latest update on the boycott of Burger King:
ASTA President Edward Adelson reports, "One visible activity for ASTA this past winter was the ASTA-led boycott of Burger King. This was in response to a negative portrayal of strings in Burger King's advertising, and was meant to send a strong message about the responsibility corporate America has to accurately portray arts opportunites in messages to the public. I am proud to report that Burger King has produced and aired a commercial which shows string playing in a positive light, and which delivers the message that playing strings is a "cool" activity. As a result of this new, positive commercial, ASTA is no longer encouraging its members to boycott Burger King. Some in the media criticized ASTA's boycott of Burger King as an over-reaction to a harmless (and fun) commercial, but it is important for these critics to understand that, for too many children in our country, the sole exposure to many arts opportunites is found in the commercials they see on TV."

**I am pleased hear of Burger King's latest action. The Internet Cello Society was quick to support the ASTA boycott, and now encourages its members to boycott Burger King no longer. If you would like to express your appreciation of Burger King's latest action, please contact them through their website at http://www.burgerking.com I truly believe your support and email were important in getting the attention of this large corporation! Thank you.
John Michel

**ICS could still use volunteers to serve as ICS Fundraisers, Reporters,
Writers, Reviewers, Editors and Forum/ Cello Chat Hosts


On May 5th our webmaster Marshall St. John found it necessary to step down as the ICS webmaster because of his increasingly busy schedule. Marshall contributed greatly to the expansion of our online resources especially in the area of organizing pages of related website links. He authored hundreds of pages on cello related topics, and for a long time he offered to cellists free personal web pages. Marshall founded the "Internet Cello Societys" website and helped integrate its strengths into the enhanced mega-cello site that you enjoy today. I will miss his ever changing web graphics and daring webpage designs and our excellent working relationship. Together we have worked hard on the ICS website and consoled each other many times after endless days and nights of webpage development.

Fortunately, Marshall recommended another excellent webmaster to take over this high maintenance site. Webmaster, current webmaster of W. W. Norton and Company and beginning cellist, has volunteered to be our webmaster. Please welcome him and if you have any suggestions or requests be sure to state them as clearly as possible (dsaffer@wwnorton.com). Be sure to include the webpage URL and a valid return address.

Roberta Morton has resigned as ICS Host Coordinator and Tutti Celli Editor due to an overloaded work and study schedule. Her services will be much missed. I would like to invite anyone who might be interested in filling either of these two positions. As the ICS director I really depend on the efforts of all our volunteers including these two. In the interim, please redirect Tutti Celli materials to me.

The distribution of this newsletter was delayed because of resignations and an extraordinary event. Two weeks ago, while my family and I were at the Shenandoah Bach Festival, some painters left some varnish rags in a box in our house that was being remodeled. The rags spontaneously combusted and burned a whole in our floor before some heroic neighbor kids put it out. Though there is significant smoke damage, I am thankful that noone was hurt and that my dog and Kennedy cello were not in the house. Counting blessings...


***If you would like to respond to something you have read in 'Tutti Celli', write to director@cello.org and type "Letter to Editor" in subject field. (Letters may be edited.)***

I was looking over the information on your cello website. I was thrilled to find this site, as my daughter is going to take up cello again. She is 12 years old and has played the piano for over 7 years. She started cello when she was 10, but we had to give the instrument up for financial reasons. We are now in a position to begin again, and I am thrilled for her. She is a very talented child. Now, my first question. I could not understand your website very clearly. You stated that you had listed some pieces of music, but I couldn't find them listed. Also, would you happen to know of a good mail order music company where I could find a good beginner instrument at a reasonable price. I have already contacted Shar Music Company. If you have time to answer me I would greatly appreciate it.
**I am glad to hear that she is again interested in playing the cello! The repertoire list is at http://cello.org/Libraries/references/syllabus.html and the stores are listed at http://cello.org/cnc/world.htm .**
Good luck!
John Michel

I love the cello repertoire syllabus which you have compiled! it's a great teaching reference and a great list for choosing new personal performance repertoire when I'm stumped for choices.


I have played the cello for 12 years. I quit last year because I thought It was my mothers choice not mine. Not a week went by when I began to miss the Cello so much that I would listen to old recordings of my playing and cry at the memory. I began playing again last January and I have found a new part of me; a new emotion that I never felt before when I was playing. I love the cello and now I am sure it is my choice to play.

I have only discovered the ICS in the last couple of days, and have wasted hours today trying to find other sites like it. Well there aren't. Thank you so much for ICS, I have been talking to Tim [Finholt] who seems to me to be a very fine human being and an excellent teacher. He has been most generous to me and has spent precious time talking to me about nerves. His students are very lucky, I reckon. You see, I am an adult beginner, and playing the cello is the one and only thing I want to do. I spend all my spare time practicing because it does make a difference, and I figure that if one spends the time it takes to learn then one gets what I can imagine must be the whole "reason why" --to sit down with the most beautiful of all instruments, all by yourself and just create beauty at will. I must forget this when I get nervy, because even simple pieces are beautiful - the instrument itself has a say in it...
Anyway, thanks for the service you guys are providing, I'll be waiting for the next TUTTI CELLI - I've already learned a lot from the issues on the Net. Tim and his simple and good advice again!
A Presto


by Tim Finholt

Ralph Kirshbaum's career encompasses solo performance, recitals, chamber music, teaching, and recording. He has appeared as soloist with major orchestras in North America, Europe, Asia, and Australia. Each summer, he performs in chamber music festivals throughout the world. Mr. Kirshbaum is founder and artistic director of the RNCM Manchester International Cello Festival held every two years at the Royal Northern College of Music in Manchester, England, where he also teaches.

[excerpt of attached article]
TF: You once said that "cello technique has become freer due to technical demands of contemporary music." How has it become "freer?"

RK: Contemporary music requires that one be able to make huge changes in sound and character in a split second. You must be able to leap around the cello at a very rapid pace, quickly change coloration with vibrato and bowing, and vary left and right hand articulation instantaneously. One's reflexes have to be very sharp, and, like anything, the more you refine it, the more you are a master of a wide spectrum of technical issues, and hence the freer you are. This leads us to the only important consideration -- the musical statement that you're trying to make. If you are a prisoner of the limitations of your technique, you aren't really free to enunciate what you want to say musically. The demands that cellists meet in contemporary pieces have helped us all to become greater masters of our instrument. Then when we go back to playing Bach or Beethoven, we are that much more in control of the instrument and are more able to make our musical statement.

TF: You said something interesting in a recent master class. A student played the slow movement of the Haydn D major concerto, and indicated that she was trying to bring out the lines of the music, thinking in terms of musical arches with crescendi and diminuendi. You told her that she could certainly play like that, but that her approach was "very nineteenth century." Do you think that playing Haydn in a more Romantic manner is wrong?

RK: I wouldn't say that it is wrong, though I think it's inappropriate. If a great performer played it very convincingly like that, then I would accept it as his or her point of view and would probably say that the performance was very impressive. But I would still say that it's inappropriate.

TF: What makes it inappropriate?

RK: That approach wasn't a part of the musical language of Haydn and his times, which was more about purity of melody and clarity of harmony and rhythm. These things get obscured when one plays with a more Romantic approach, which uses more rhythmic license. In the classical style there is still breathing, phrasing, and shaping, but the kind of indulgence that one finds in the nineteenth century was not present in Haydn's day.

TF: Do you think that Haydn would object if he heard somebody play his music in a nineteenth century style?

RK: I didn't know Haydn well enough to answer that question! But I doubt that he, or any composer, would object to a beautiful and intelligent interpretation of his work. Similarly, I doubt that Bach or Haydn would object if they heard their music played on modern instruments. I think it is better to try to stay within the musical vocabulary of the time when a piece was written, as best we understand it.

**The complete transcript includes photo**


by Christopher Hume

Superstar cellist and designer Julie Messervy plot a garden, based on the music of J. S. Bach, for Toronto's waterfront. Yo-Yo Ma is the first to admit that, in his search for the truth, he has been led down the garden path. Fortunately, this garden path runs through the Music Garden, the result of a unique collaboration between the superstar cellist and American author/designer Julie Messervy.

The scheme was originally intended for Boston, but that fell through last year and the pair settled on a 3.2-acre site on Toronto's waterfront. If all goes according to the new plan, the plot will be transformed into a garden based on the music of J. S. Bach. The site is a roughly triangular parcel of land that stretches along Lake Ontario west from Spadina Ave. almost to Bathurst St.

Though the $1.5-million project has plenty of supporters, there's likely to be a film about it before it gets into the ground. That may sound strange, but in fact the Music Garden began as a TV special, a Rhombus Media special to be precise. Experience tells us to expect the unexpected when the Toronto TV production company is involved and this is no exception. Not even the director of the one-hour program, Kevin McMahon, knows how the episode will end. Neither does Ma nor Messervy. No one does. And the deadline is September to meet a fall broadcast date.

On the other hand, there's no doubt about how the project started. The beginning came five years ago when Ma approached Rhombus with the idea of doing a series of TV specials inspired by Bach's six unaccompanied cello suites. The twist was that in each episode, Ma would join forces with an artist from a different discipline to reinterpret the music. In addition to Messervy, the collaborators include filmmaker Atom Egoyan, Torval and Dean, the Mark Morris Dance Group and Japan's leading kabuki actor, Tamasaburo Bando.

``I've been struggling all my life to define what a piece of music is,'' says Ma. ``Though it's abstract, music is about something. But in code, like DNA. ``The first suite, which Julie and I worked on together, has always reminded me of nature, something to do with trees and water as opposed to something that's human.'' to full article

[The excerpt above is part of an article that appeared in the Toronto Star and is reprinted by permission, courtesy of the Toronto Star]


July/August Award Website:


featuring information and painting of cellist Vedran Smailovic

**Please notify John Michel of interesting websites that you would like to be considered for this recognition in the future. Websites will be selected regularly based on their content, cello relevance, creativity and presentation style!

*** If you would like to ask a question, discuss an issue or get some expert advice, post a message to the official ICS message board called CELLO CHAT . ICS forum hosts have been asked to check your posts regularly. In this way not only do the forum hosts see your message but the entire membership and Internet community! You are still welcome to contact the forum hosts directly***

Write all ICS Hosts or contact one host representatives.

RE: Cello/cello-related movies
<<Delicatessen, Barry Lyndon, The Witches of Eastwick, Ninochtka, Meeting Venus, Idaho Potato, Take the money and run... could you help me to find any film in which there is at least one [real] cellist?>>
**"The Hunger," "Deception," a gamba movie -- "Tous les Matins du Monde" -- are some. There's that Woody Allen movie where he is in a marching band with a cello, but I don't know the title.
Micki & Maude (B. Edwards, USA, 1984)
The Living Daylights (Bond movie, UK 1987)
Jeremy (A. Barron, USA, 1973)
Truly Madly Deeply (A. Minghella, UK, 1991)
Love in the Afternoon (B. Wilder, USA, 1957)
Sticky Fingers (C. Adams, USA, 1988)
Short Cuts (R. Altman, USA, 1993)
Source: somewhere on the net...**

**That Woody Allen's film you mentioned in your follow-up is "Take the money and run". I've heard of "Toutes les matins du monde", but not about "The hunger" and "Deception". Could you tell me anything more about them (casting, year of filming, story...)?**

**"The Hunger" is a sensual and at times bloody vampire movie (Rated R at least), probably made in the 70's. The actors are all famous, but the only one I can remember is the cellist in the movie, David Bowie. You hear the Bach G Major Prelude, the slow movement from Schubert's B-flat piano trio, and some others that I don't recall. "Deception" is an old movie with Claude Raines and Bette Davis. It is about a concert cellist. The actual cellist in the soundtrack is the late great Eleanor Aller, who plays the Korngold and the Haydn D concerti.**

RE: Prokofiev Symphony-Concerto
**I think that one of the most important parts to cello playing is listening, and unfortunately many cellists are not able or just simply do not do it enough. I would like to recommend one of my absolute favorite pieces for you all to listen to if you have not already. The piece, Symphony Concertante, is by the Russian Composer Sergi Prokofiev and the piece was written for Mstislav Rostropovich. The piece is basically a cello concerto with a "fancy" name. There are two great recordings of the piece available at your local record store one with Rostropovich and one with Yo Yo Ma. There are other performers of the piece as well, but these should be the easiest to find.:: I agree with Doug! This is a landmark in the cello repertoire. It is as important a piece as the Dvorak Concerto. One word of note. Its true name is Symphony-Concerto. Prokofiev never called it Sinfonia-Concertante. This name is not proper though it is widely used for Prokofiev's op. 125. All of Prokofiev's writings on this masterpiece has him referring to it as Symphony-Concerto. It's a great piece!**
Paul Tseng, ICS cello chat moderator

RE: Jazz on strings
<<HI! Me and my friends would like to play some jazz on our strings.( 1 cello and 2-3 violins) Do you know where to go or what to play or what to do? Please, write to me and tell me! We need it. THANKS>>
**I've been looking for ways to play jazz (and generally improvisational music) on the cello for a while. So far I've only come up with stuff like the Kellaway Cello Quartet and some of Mark Summer's stuff (see the Mark Summer article at this site - excellent stuff). I'd try transcribing some turtle island stuff, or some old Stephane Grapelli/Django stuff as a first cut. Also, the "Appalachian Waltz" CD w/Yo-Yo, O'Connor and Meyer has some very interesting stuff, though not blues-based like traditional jazz. I'd love to know if anybody has other good source material.**

RE: I need some professional hints
<<I'm having a lot of trouble getting a pure sound high up on the 'a' string......HELP!!!! ...am I missing something...is it just a lot of practice that makes the pure tonal sound when playing high on the finger board....the shifts aren't bad but its hard not to sound like a constipated cat...do I need to change my bow position on the string, change my bow arm...pressure and tension...or am I never going to get it? Its the hardest place to improve! >>

**I have found that it is important to keep the bow at right angles to the bridge and close enough to the bridge to find the sounding point. The weight into the string with the bow arm should not be too much. The closer to the bridge you are the narrower the sounding point gets. Hence, the degree of "play" you have to work with is diminished. Use a mirror and watch that the bow makes a 90 degree angle to the string while you draw it back and forth and it will tend to "track" straight across the string.**
Owen Carman, ICS Host

RE: 14/m searching for cello penpal!!! **Hello Ben, I'm a Spanish girl of 16, and I'd like to be your penpal if you want to. I've played cello for about three and a half years; I play the piano as well, I'm in 7th grade; and yesterday!!! I started french horn lessons (I am a music fanatic, as you can see). I like ICS very much because it helps you meeting other cellist to exchange opinions with.**
Eva M



If you know of cello society newsletters, bibliographies of music, teaching materials, references, indices, lists or articles that should be added to ICS Library, please send data to director@cello.org. (Library contents will be available to all Internet users; please include author and written statement of release for unlimited or limited reproduction.)


I am looking to hire musicians for a concert with the German tenor Rene Kollo.
Program: Light Opera (Lehar etc. plus some Overtures)
Location: Emmendingen, Germany (near Freiburg southern Germany)
Time : July 23rd - 25th
Payment: 280.00 Marks plus Hotel ( 4-5 services)
All instruments.
Stilley/Steiner/Thomas <kaata@sirius.com>

The Midsummer Musical Retreat is an orchestral, choral, and piano program rich in musical experience and expressions. Participants enjoy a full, intense, yet light hearted five days of musical immersion. The program, tailored for adults, offers a noncompetitive stretch and challenge away from normal daily life. The location of the retreat is held annually at Fort Worden Conference, Port Townsend, Washington. The 1997 retreat dates are from Wed. July 30 to Sun. August 3, 1997. For general and music related information see http://home1.gte.net/morven/retreat.html

"22 Years From Now", the latest CD by jazz cellist Hank Roberts, is now available. "22 Years From Now" contains fourteen pieces of music for solo cello (all but four selections are improvised).

"Elegant from cover to content, this is a lovingly conceived piece of work. Hank Roberts is always rewarding to listen to, but there's something extra special this time, a purity and pleasure that is unmistakable. He uses the word 'passion' to describe certain moments in his playing, and that is the most accurate term." Jeff Westerman / THE ITHACA TIMES / May 15, 1997

"It went beyond anything I thought could happen. For me it's a milestone, because it's my first solo (cello) CD. It shows unabashedly different parts of what I do. A really strong element of the improvisational side of me, which for me really validates it as a form that's as strong as classical or jazz." Hank Roberts / THE ITHACA TIMES / May 15, 1997

"22 Years From Now" (Level Green CD 22001)
For more information see http://www.levelgreen.com

***All members are welcome to post announcements or news that are pertinent to our global cello society. Send information to director@cello.org***


Posture Peg for Cellists

Full Moon Home Page for Cello Players Resource for beginners esp. adults and info. on Greenhouse videos

Douglas Harvey's Cello Page RealAudio clips and bios of some cellists

Thurmond Knight, Luthier

Yoko Hasegawa's Home Page versions in English and Japanese

Gagliano Recordings

Suggest other interesting cello related websites to our ICS NET Surfers

Direct correspondence to the appropriate ICS Staff
Webmaster: Webmaster
Director: John Michel
Copyright © 1997 Internet Cello Society