” … It all begins with a soulful invocation. “The Call,” for flute solo, takes flight from its yearning opening bars into a trilling bird song that can’t help but suggest a biblical harbinger dove. Rena Urso performed it with freshness, grace, and feeling on Friday night.” Steven Winn, San Francisco Classical Voice, review of Oakland Symphony season finale of Beethoven Symphony 9 and Jake Heggie The Deepest Desire.
” … Mezzo-soprano Layna Chianakas, the most underused soloist in the Beethoven (yet another reason this pairing makes sense), brought a lush, dark tone to her assignment, as well as a limpid clarity of phrasing in the beautiful final song, “Primary Colors.” The flute solos that frame the piece were delivered with sensitive assurance by Rena Urso .” Joshua Kosman, SF Gate, review of Oakland Symphony season finale of Beethoven Symphony 9 and Jake Heggie The Deepest Desire.
Photo by Elizabeth La Coste