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INNUENDO PIANO QUINTET NEXT AT ST. JOHN SCHOOL

Do a search for "music group Innuendo" on the Internet, and you come up mainly with sites having to do with Malaysia's first four-piece rhythm & blues band. Note: That is not the group playing on St. Thomas and St. John in the coming week!
However, the Malaysian r&b Innuendo's home page does offer a thought that applies well to the chamber music quintet Innuendo that will perform in Tillett Gardens on Wednesday, Jan. 24, and at the St. John School of the Arts on Thursday, Jan. 25. Giving background as to how the quartet got its name, the web site states that the word innuendo "means music with poetic values."
Most dictionaries aren't nearly so kind, typically defining the word as an indirect reference, usually with a negative connotation. But for the classical Innuendo quintet, "music with poetic values" works just fine.
The same program will be performed for both concerts – three works that should intrigue music lovers a bit tired of the old chestnuts of the European Masters. One piece is from the latter half of the 19th Century and the others are by 20th Century composers. The concerts will open with the String Quartet in E-flat major by Russian (actually, Bohemian) composer Antonín Dvorák. This will be followed by two pieces by contemporary composers – "Four for Tango" by Argentina's Astor Piazzola and the Piano Quintet in C minor by Hungary's Ernö Dohnanyi.
Four-fifths of Innuendo will be making its second appearance on the Classics in the Garden and St. John School stages. Violinists Lucia Lin and Christopher Wu and cellist Owen Young performed three seasons ago as members of the Seranac quartet, with pianist Keith Lockhart as guest.
Since then, they have reconstituted the group as a piano quintet, formalizing Lockhart's role and bringing Amadi Hummings aboard as violist, and rechristened it Innuendo. Promotional material describes the members as "performers who seek to share their passion for chamber music with the broadest possible audience."
That fits perfectly with the philosophy of Lockhart, who is relatively little recognized as a pianist but is known widely as the conductor of what, thanks to public television, is probably the best-known symphony orchestra in the nation, the Boston Pops.
Lockhart came to that position six years ago, at the age of 35. His immediate predecessors were icons of the orchestral world: John Williams, the acclaimed film composer ("Star Wars," E.T.," "Indiana Jones"), who had wielded the baton from 1985 through 1993, and the fabled Arthur Fiedler, who had led the orchestra for an unprecedented 50 years before that.
Although those were two tough acts to follow, Lockhart quickly won a following with his low-key and high-energy style combined with a commitment to marketing classical music in new ways to new audiences. (The cover of the orchestra's first album under his baton, "Runnin' Wild," features him in mid-dash, dressed in formal tails – plus T-shirt, running shorts and high-top sneakers.)
In contrast, Lockhart is a serious musician in serious company in the chamber ensemble setting. And he credits violinist Lin, who happens to be his wife, with inspiring him to return to the piano as a performing artist. While Lockhart's demands as a conductor left him little time for piano practice, his biography states, "all of this changed" with his marriage to Lin five years ago. "Playing together has been an important and enjoyable component of their life together," it says, with Lockhart promising "to try and practice!" (It hasn't gotten any easier since 1998, when he added serving as music director of the Utah Symphony to his responsibilities.)
Lockhart majored in piano performance as an undergraduate before pursing a second degree in orchestral conducting. Prior to joining the Boston Pops, he was associate conductor of the Cincinnati Symphony and Cincinnati Pops Orchestras, and while there he appeared as pianist with the Cincinnati Symphony Chamber Players and occasionally as soloist for pops and educational concerts.
Violinist Lin, a member of the Boston Symphony Orchestra, served as its concertmistress in 1988-91 and again in 1996-99. A winner in the 1990 International Tchaikovsky Competition in Moscow, she had served as concertmistress of the Milwaukee and London Symphony Orchestras before joining the Boston Symphony. She also has been a member since 1998 of the Muir String Quartet, named for naturalist and Sierra Club founder John Muir. (The quartet donates proceeds from its EcoClassics CD's to various environmental and conservation organizations.)
Violinist Wu, a member of the Pittsburgh Symphony, became its youngest member upon joining its ranks in 1988. An avid chamber musician, he performs regularly with members of the Boston Symphony and at festivals worldwide. He is on the music faculty of Carnegie Mellon University.
Violist Hummings has appeared recently as a concert soloist with the North Carolina Symphony, performing the Penderecki viola concerto. He also is a member of the Concertante Chamber Players and is on the music faculty of Old Dominion University. He received a national award from the Boys and Girls Clubs of America, with which he has an active artistic and mentoring relationship.
Cellist Young has been a member of the Boston Symphony Orchestra since 1991 and was with the Pittsburgh Symphony for two years before that. He has appeared as soloist with numerous orchestras including the Boston Pops. He teaches and coaches at several New England music institutions and is actively involved in Project Step – String Training and Education Program for Students of Color.
Concert details
The St. Thomas performance will be at 8 p.m. Wednesday, Jan. 24, a Classics in the Garden concert in Tillett Gardens. Tickets are $25. Seating is numbered and reservations are strongly recommended. Optional dinner is available with concert seating at tables. Dinner is an additional $30 plus bar service and gratuity, and reservations are required. To reserve or learn more, call (340) 775-1929, fax to 775-9482 or e-mail to tillett@islands.vi.
The St. John performance will be at 8 p.m. Thursday, Jan. 25, at the St. John School of the Arts in Cruz Bay. Tickets are $30, or $25 for students with I.D. Advance sales are at Connections; any remaining tickets will be available at the door. As space is limited, advance purchase is recommended. For further information, call (340) 779-4322 or 776-6777.

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Do a search for "music group Innuendo" on the Internet, and you come up mainly with sites having to do with Malaysia's first four-piece rhythm & blues band. Note: That is not the group playing on St. Thomas and St. John in the coming week!
However, the Malaysian r&b Innuendo's home page does offer a thought that applies well to the chamber music quintet Innuendo that will perform in Tillett Gardens on Wednesday, Jan. 24, and at the St. John School of the Arts on Thursday, Jan. 25. Giving background as to how the quartet got its name, the web site states that the word innuendo "means music with poetic values."
Most dictionaries aren't nearly so kind, typically defining the word as an indirect reference, usually with a negative connotation. But for the classical Innuendo quintet, "music with poetic values" works just fine.
The same program will be performed for both concerts – three works that should intrigue music lovers a bit tired of the old chestnuts of the European Masters. One piece is from the latter half of the 19th Century and the others are by 20th Century composers. The concerts will open with the String Quartet in E-flat major by Russian (actually, Bohemian) composer Antonín Dvorák. This will be followed by two pieces by contemporary composers – "Four for Tango" by Argentina's Astor Piazzola and the Piano Quintet in C minor by Hungary's Ernö Dohnanyi.
Four-fifths of Innuendo will be making its second appearance on the Classics in the Garden and St. John School stages. Violinists Lucia Lin and Christopher Wu and cellist Owen Young performed three seasons ago as members of the Seranac quartet, with pianist Keith Lockhart as guest.
Since then, they have reconstituted the group as a piano quintet, formalizing Lockhart's role and bringing Amadi Hummings aboard as violist, and rechristened it Innuendo. Promotional material describes the members as "performers who seek to share their passion for chamber music with the broadest possible audience."
That fits perfectly with the philosophy of Lockhart, who is relatively little recognized as a pianist but is known widely as the conductor of what, thanks to public television, is probably the best-known symphony orchestra in the nation, the Boston Pops.
Lockhart came to that position six years ago, at the age of 35. His immediate predecessors were icons of the orchestral world: John Williams, the acclaimed film composer ("Star Wars," E.T.," "Indiana Jones"), who had wielded the baton from 1985 through 1993, and the fabled Arthur Fiedler, who had led the orchestra for an unprecedented 50 years before that.
Although those were two tough acts to follow, Lockhart quickly won a following with his low-key and high-energy style combined with a commitment to marketing classical music in new ways to new audiences. (The cover of the orchestra's first album under his baton, "Runnin' Wild," features him in mid-dash, dressed in formal tails – plus T-shirt, running shorts and high-top sneakers.)
In contrast, Lockhart is a serious musician in serious company in the chamber ensemble setting. And he credits violinist Lin, who happens to be his wife, with inspiring him to return to the piano as a performing artist. While Lockhart's demands as a conductor left him little time for piano practice, his biography states, "all of this changed" with his marriage to Lin five years ago. "Playing together has been an important and enjoyable component of their life together," it says, with Lockhart promising "to try and practice!" (It hasn't gotten any easier since 1998, when he added serving as music director of the Utah Symphony to his responsibilities.)
Lockhart majored in piano performance as an undergraduate before pursing a second degree in orchestral conducting. Prior to joining the Boston Pops, he was associate conductor of the Cincinnati Symphony and Cincinnati Pops Orchestras, and while there he appeared as pianist with the Cincinnati Symphony Chamber Players and occasionally as soloist for pops and educational concerts.
Violinist Lin, a member of the Boston Symphony Orchestra, served as its concertmistress in 1988-91 and again in 1996-99. A winner in the 1990 International Tchaikovsky Competition in Moscow, she had served as concertmistress of the Milwaukee and London Symphony Orchestras before joining the Boston Symphony. She also has been a member since 1998 of the Muir String Quartet, named for naturalist and Sierra Club founder John Muir. (The quartet donates proceeds from its EcoClassics CD's to various environmental and conservation organizations.)
Violinist Wu, a member of the Pittsburgh Symphony, became its youngest member upon joining its ranks in 1988. An avid chamber musician, he performs regularly with members of the Boston Symphony and at festivals worldwide. He is on the music faculty of Carnegie Mellon University.
Violist Hummings has appeared recently as a concert soloist with the North Carolina Symphony, performing the Penderecki viola concerto. He also is a member of the Concertante Chamber Players and is on the music faculty of Old Dominion University. He received a national award from the Boys and Girls Clubs of America, with which he has an active artistic and mentoring relationship.
Cellist Young has been a member of the Boston Symphony Orchestra since 1991 and was with the Pittsburgh Symphony for two years before that. He has appeared as soloist with numerous orchestras including the Boston Pops. He teaches and coaches at several New England music institutions and is actively involved in Project Step – String Training and Education Program for Students of Color.
Concert details
The St. Thomas performance will be at 8 p.m. Wednesday, Jan. 24, a Classics in the Garden concert in Tillett Gardens. Tickets are $25. Seating is numbered and reservations are strongly recommended. Optional dinner is available with concert seating at tables. Dinner is an additional $30 plus bar service and gratuity, and reservations are required. To reserve or learn more, call (340) 775-1929, fax to 775-9482 or e-mail to tillett@islands.vi.
The St. John performance will be at 8 p.m. Thursday, Jan. 25, at the St. John School of the Arts in Cruz Bay. Tickets are $30, or $25 for students with I.D. Advance sales are at Connections; any remaining tickets will be available at the door. As space is limited, advance purchase is recommended. For further information, call (340) 779-4322 or 776-6777.