Harpsichord recital Sunday at Grace Lutheran Church

Published 8:50 am Thursday, September 24, 2009

On Sunday, Robert Tewes will present a harpsichord recital in the sanctuary of Grace Lutheran Church, 918 Garfield Ave., beginning at 4 p.m.

The recital will feature music of George F. Handel, Francois Couperin, Domenico Scarlatti and Johann Sebastian Bach. The public is welcome to attend. There is no admission charge, however, an offering will be received during intermission, the proceeds of which will benefit the church’s organ restoration fund.

Tewes will perform on his own Wittmayer Scarlatti instrument, a two manual Italian Baroque-inspired harpsichord, built by the German Wittmayer Harpsichord Company (Berlin) in 1968. It is an instrument capable of performing with a variety of tonal color, due to its double 8 foot, single 4 foot and buff stop dispositions. The harpsichord is a precursor of the modern piano, simulating the sound of a plucked string instrument (lute), and is noteworthy for the clarity of each individual line of contrapuntal melody. It was a mainstay of early music, particularly during the late Renaissance and Baroque periods. Mozart, known as a Classic period composer, grew up studying his keyboarding on the harpsichord. Later he turned his attention to the newly developed forte piano.

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Tewes is in his ninth year as music director/organist to the congregation of Grace Lutheran Church. A certified associate in ministry of the ELCA and proprietor of Crescendo restaurant, he resides in Albert Lea with his wife Patty and three daughters.

A period of refreshments and fellowship will follow the program in the church fellowship hall. Also available at the concert will be copies of a recently released CD recording by Tewes, titled “For Everything a Season.” The CD features Tewes’ original liturgical compositions, performed by the composer.