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STRINGS MAGAZINE - THE ECLECTIC MUSICAL WORLD OF LUCIA MICARELLI (BY GREG CAHILL)
Ask Lucia Micarelli about her knack for eclectic programming and the soft-spoken, classically trained violinist offers a characteristically modest response. “I don’t think it’s a big deal anymore, because so many people are playing around with all these different styles,” she says, during a phone call from her Los Angeles home. “Even people who are well-established in classical careers are exploring other types of music. The younger generation of soloists is much more open and interested in other genres, even more so than ten years ago. That’s exciting to me.”
That’s all true, but few other musicians can lay claim to being an ambassador of eclecticism with a global media platform.
Earlier this year, PBS-TV debuted An Evening with Lucia Micarelli, a 60-minute showcase that found the 35-year-old violinist performing everything from a triple-fiddle Irish jig and Ravel’s rhapsodic Tzigane to Gershwin’s “Someone to Watch Over Me” and Led Zeppelin’s rock powerhouse “Kashmir.”
Jazz, folk, Cajun, classical, rock—it’s all part of Micarelli’s musical world. The music from that broadcast will be released in October on a 16-track live album. And in her first nationwide solo concert tour, the violinist is set to perform 24 dates, beginning in July.
It’s already been a long road. Micarelli, who is half Italian and half Korean, was born in Queens, New York, and began playing violin at age three. She studied at the Juilliard School’s pre-college division with legendary violin teacher Dorothy DeLay and then at the Manhattan School of Music for a year with Pinchas Zukerman.
But she left school before graduating.
“I felt like I needed to figure out how to apply all the technique and skills I learned in a real way,” she told Strings in 2010. “School felt a bit myopic.”
She soon built a reputation as a go-to rock and jazz violinist, touring with the popular progressive-rock band the Trans-Siberian Orchestra, pop singer Josh Groban, classic-rock artists Jethro Tull, and pop-jazz trumpeter Chris Botti, among others. She also released two major-label solo albums: 2004’s Music from a Farther Room and 2006’s Interlude, both of which combine pop, tango, jazz, and classical selections.
In 2009, she appeared on Botti’s popular PBS-TV special Chris Botti in Boston—the video excerpt of her star-turn solo on plaintive Botti ballad “Emmanuel” has netted more than 7.6 million views on YouTube.
Landing a starring role in 2010 as a New Orleans street musician on the hit HBO series Treme proved fortuitous in unexpected ways. Initially, Micarelli’s management had received a call from a New York casting director looking for a violinist to fill the part. Micarelli had no acting experience (creator David Simon often uses amateurs to add authenticity to his projects), but the violinist began considering the offer after watching a video interview with Simon (whom Esquire has dubbed “the greatest man in television writing”) and being impressed by his intelligence and serious nature. Then, on the Fourth of July, Micarelli tripped and landed on a wine glass, severing several nerves in her left hand and leaving her worried that she would never again be able to play professionally. (She still has only partial feeling in three fingers.)
“As time has passed, I’ve realized that Treme really blew open my musical world.”
She went into physical therapy and decided to pursue Simon’s offer.
Her experience during four seasons on the show helped to expand Micarelli’s musical horizons and is reflected on the new album, which includes a rendition of Treme co-star Steve Earle’s ballad “This City.” Yet, she remains committed to classical music and is excited about introducing it to the uninitiated. “I’m aware that the majority of my audience isn’t your typical classical listener, so I feel more motivated to bring classical music to them,” she says. “I present it in its natural state alongside jazz and other styles.
“One of the things that’s so exciting to me is that consistently what audiences are most drawn to are the classical elements of the show. Even little kids. After the show, I’ve had people come up to me with their seven year old and I’ll ask the child, ‘Did you like it?’ And they’ll say, ‘Yes.’ I’ll ask, ‘Was there a song that you liked the best?’ And they’ll say, ‘I like the Ravel duo.’ It’s like, wow! It’s amazing. And I think it helps that it’s not presented in this sort of pretentious fashion.
“It makes it more interesting to the audience.”
Strings caught up with Micarelli earlier this summer to discuss her new album, her eclectic musical taste, and her desire to use the universal language of music to connect with a diverse audience.
You acknowledge Treme on the new album. How did your experience on the show affect you personally and professionally?
I’ve been thinking about that lately. I didn’t expect that experience to be so musically challenging. I just thought, ‘OK, I’m gonna try to act and that will be a lot to do.’ But as time has passed I’ve realized that Treme really blew open my musical world. It exposed me to a lot of styles that I didn’t know about previously. But also there’s an amazing musical community in New Orleans and the musicians have this amazing spirit that’s expressed through their music. That really influenced how I feel about music because there’s an attitude in New Orleans about music just being so enmeshed in people’s lives. When the family gets together, they fix meals together and while food is cooking they’re playing music. When there’s a funeral, they gather in a second-line to play music to honor the dead. It’s a part of everything.
That’s really different from the musical world that I came from, in which you practice in private and work hard to get something down perfectly and then you perform it. There’s a preciousness about that approach to music—growing up in a conservatory environment can make you feel that the music is all about performance. It’s a recital. Obviously, that part of my brain isn’t going to change entirely, since that’s how I grew up. But seeing musicians incorporate music into their everyday lives and seeing them use it to connect with people socially makes you realize that there’s so much more to it—music can be about joy, it can be about celebration, it can be about history.
And Treme shifted my perspective, so I have more intention now with the music I play. I now have a different understanding about what music means to people. I’m more focused on connection, on sharing, on feeling that we’ve come together to share this moment. Now I feel that performances are a communal experience in which we’ve come together to create a beautiful evening. There’s more joy that way—it’s more fulfilling.
Did that perspective inform the programming for the PBS special and the new live album?
When I first sat down to program a solo concert, I knew that I didn’t want any filler. I wanted to play the music that I really, really love and that I feel super connected to. So, I decided that I was not going to think about genres or how we execute things—I decided that I would think only about the music that I really love. As a result I came up with this crazy, seemingly incohesive list of jazz and classical and Cajun and folk and rock. It was all over the place and I just went for it. A little bit eclectic. [Laughs.]
But these songs all have meaning for me—you end up taking a journey through my musical life. It makes me feel that I am connecting with the audience—it’s more intimate than anything I’ve done in the past.
As a player, what are the technical challenges of shifting from classical to Cajun to rock and so on?
First of all, I have so many challenges to begin with [laughs]—the instrument is a challenge, the music is a challenge. I was worried initially that it might be difficult to switch back and forth. But I didn’t program the show thinking that I wanted to showcase a lot of styles; I programmed it thinking I wanted to play music that I like. So because I’m attached to the music in a personal way, I look forward to what I’m playing. It doesn’t feel like I’m switching genres at all, it’s more like telling a lot of different stories. So, in performance I don’t think about those challenges.
“I’d like to think that I’m curious on my own, but if I think about all the different paths I’ve taken I can usually link them to a person that I’ve met or a world that I sort of came into.”
Technically, I’m more aware of it when I’m practicing. For example, when I practice classical music, I do more technical work: string crossing exercises, flow work, and stuff with the metronome. It’s more about cleaning things up so they’re more precise. And when I practice jazz or folk, I just focus on slightly different things. I’ll spend a lot of time just getting slides to sound the way I want them to or fussing over what kind of turn I want to do—is it a turn above the note or a turn below the note? Or do I do a little weird stop-bow thing someplace? But in performance, it doesn’t feel like I’m shifting genres. The bigger challenge is shifting from playing my instrument to singing. That’s the only time I feel aware of a challenge.
You started singing when you filmed Treme.
Yeah, and it’s the thing that I’ve done the least. So there’s a certain apprehension about that. I am a very emotional player, but when I’m singing I feel really vulnerable. I’ve noticed that I get even more emotional when I sing. I don’t have as much focus or muscle memory—it’s a much more raw experience.
I sense that you have a lot of curiosity about music.
I can’t really pinpoint it. I didn’t listen to anything except classical music until I was 17. Then I started listening to Miles [Davis] and John [Coltrane] and Led Zeppelin, all in the same few weeks. It was a real interesting experience. And a lot of it has been driven by the people I have met. I’d like to think that I’m curious on my own, but if I think about all the different paths I’ve taken, I can usually link them to a person that I’ve met or a world that I sort of came into.
So, when I was 17, I met the cellist David Eggar, who was both a classical cellist and a pianist who could improvise and play jazz. I was just blown away. I knew that I wanted to learn to improvise. I wanted to be able to do what he was doing. While touring with Josh Groban, I met [jazz trumpeter] Chris Botti and found myself on the road with a ridiculously legit jazz band—everybody I was around 24 hours a day was a jazz cat. I was so impressed. They taught me a lot—they told me about their childhoods and how they had experienced music, and they would play their favorite records for me and give me advice. It was the same when I was filming Treme.
I would find these musicians and learned that someone else’s perspective is always going to be different from yours. So, to a certain extent I feel comfortable around most any musician—I feel that on a base level we get each other. But it’s incredible how different everybody’s story is and how their paths are different and how they came to the music and how they think about it.
I think I have a curiosity about people and I just happen to be around musicians all the time. They have given me so much. I’ve learned that it’s a good thing to put myself in situations where nobody else has the same background as me. That’s how I really grow. Now, I seek out situations like that so I can learn from people all the time. I just find people really fascinating.
Did Pinchas Zukerman encourage or discourage your eclectic interests?
Well, I was doing that secretly. [Laughs.] I don’t recall that I ever brought that [eclectic side] into class or that we ever really talked about it. But Zukerman has his own program at Manhattan School and it required you to play chamber music. At Juilliard, in pre-college, you could play chamber music but you didn’t have to. With Zukerman, you did. That was huge for me.
My love of ensemble playing really came from Zukerman. I knew about chamber music but hadn’t spent a lot of time with it. He was adamant about playing chamber music. He also felt it was really important for our solo playing. I fell in love with it so hard. I mean, I had done some of it in pre-college and had done a healthy amount of quartet playing, but I didn’t start to appreciate or understand chamber music until I studied with Zukerman. That was the beginning of . . . well, changing my mind, and I continue to do that. Up until that point, I was focused on the solo repertoire and preparing for competitions—you get really focused on that because solo repertoire is very different than chamber music. Not technically, or anything, but chamber music is all about listening, interacting, and sharing. It’s all about connecting with other people and being reactive to them. That wasn’t a strength of mine—it wasn’t something I had practiced. I was pretty much in the practice room working on my concertos. But I loved chamber music so much, I loved collaborating and being part of a group, and having other people’s opinions and ideas feeding my awareness.
When I look back, I see that what I am doing with my solo show has a very strong chamber-music element—I have essentially a string quartet onstage and I bring a lot of classical chamber-music arrangements into the program. I love playing with people; I love small groups like that.
Do you still play chamber music for fun?
I get together with friends on occasion, but I don’t have time to attend chamber concerts outside of my own program. I’m always looking for ways to fit in a chamber movement in my program. I’m trying to fill my show with all the things I wish I had time for in my extracurricular time. [Laughs.]
Tell me about your upcoming national solo tour.
I’m really excited about going on the road and meeting so many people. Obviously, recording is so isolating—you have such a disconnect with your audience. But playing live, and with a program that isn’t a rigidly structured classical program, I get to know my audience and to talk to people. That’s been the most gratifying part. I also get to play with my friends: My husband, Neel Hammond, plays violin with me, and Vanessa Freebairn-Smith, one of the cellists, I’ve known since I played with Josh Groban. I tour with Eric Byers, the cellist from the Calder Quartet. Ben Jacobson, the Calder violinist, has played with me a lot as well.
They’re all really close friends and when we get together in concert, it’s like family. I haven’t always had that experience in my professional life and it feels like that New Orleans thing, getting together with my loved ones and celebrating and sharing. It’s new and exciting and I still have moments onstage when I look around and think, “This is so cool. I get to play with you guys and I love you guys.” I’m really enjoying that right now.
WATCH LUCIA ON NEW DAY NORTHWEST!
Violin IS Like Hot Sauce, It Goes with Anything!
Lucia Micarelli Wows Parker Playhouse Crowd
By Steve Gladstone, Miamiartzine
Q: What do Maurice Ravel, George Gershwin, Miles Davis, Josh Groban, Robert Plant and Barbra Streisand have in common?
A: Lucia Micarelli.
Violin virtuoso Lucia Micarelli appeared with her spectacular band on Friday, Sept. 28, at the Parker Playhouse in Fort Lauderdale.
Growing up in Queens, Micarelli is a prodigy of Italian and Korean heritage who, at the age of three, picked up a violin and hasn't stopped pushing its limits. Limits? What limits?
The young Micarelli was sheltered from most genres of music – classical repertoire for violin was her musical lens until she was 17. Then, after attending Juilliard, she entered the Manhattan School of Music where she was turned onto music that wasn't “written down,” but was improvised; she listened to Miles Davis, Coltrane, Pink Floyd, Jethro Tull and consequently changed her artistic choices, now mixing it up with the likes of Ravel, Gershwin, Davis, Zeppelin, Queen, some old fashion foot-stompin' fiddle, and...and...besides being a bravura violinist, she sings!
After winning the role of street musician Annie Talarico (classically trained, working for tips) in HBO's TV series "Treme," about life in New Orleans after Hurricane Katrina, Micarelli was exposed to the vibrant New Orleans tuneful scene and ended up with, in her words, “a huge appetite for all kinds of other music.” She has become musically omnivorous, balancing technique and collaboration.
“If you've been trained to listen to mistakes your whole life, you forget to listen to opportunities.” Micarelli illuminated the “mental shift” one has to make from the precision required to execute classical music to the more collaborative approach of other genres,where the tunes are more like having a “conversation with people,” leaning towards rhythm and a “groove.”
Now in her mid-30s, Micarelli programs her shows with eclectic sensibilities, sharing her classical repertoire as well as the music she has grown to love.
Her band includes Neel Hammond (violin), Zach Dellinger (viola), Vanessa Freebairn-Smith (cello), Leonardo Amuedo (guitar), Ian Walker (upright bass) and Rob Thies (piano).
These transformative musicians empowered Micarelli to take her audience on an omni-directional musical ride. This is a good thing, as she knows that people's playlists these days are varied. Since most of her fans know her from her work outside the cough-free-zones of classical, she took the opportunity to give her audience a taste of the conventional bent while ramping up the musical landscape with standards, jazz, rock and folk tunes.
It is abundantly apparent that Micarelli is an accomplished violinist possessing fierce technical skills that are only exceeded by her passion for playing. The lissome brunette cuts a cool silhouette in bare feet with a long black dress, often while performing with one foot flat on the stage while the other foot is arched upward balanced on her big toe, looking as if she might take off at any moment. Certainly her playing did.
Micarelli immediately captured the imagination of her audience with the opening phrases of Estonian composer Arvo Part's “Fratres,” a mounting flurry of frenzied notes that morphed into the exquisite “Gabriel's Oboe,” the main theme from the film The Mission; Freebairn-Smith and Micarelli sweetly rendering the sublime motif that ended with a prayer.
Exploiting her stunning command of her instrument, Micarelli dazzled the crowd with Saint-Saens's lively Introduction & Rondo Capriccioso, tonal richness, flawless ascending runs and double stops igniting her fans. The first movement of Corigliano's Sonata for Violin and Piano was another crowd-pleaser, both melodic and dissonant. Thies's nimble fingers and Micarelli's leaps displayed how classical music can be a contact sport.
The classically trained Thies's possesses considerable classical and jazz chops, making him a force of nature in either genre.
Micarelli and Freebairn-Smith teamed up for the second movement of the Ravel Sonata for Violin and Cello, where they traded licks with the driving dissonant theme, fiercely in sync with the twists and turns at every measure.
The string quintet rendered Barber's “Adagio for Strings” with the required sensitivity,the amplified instruments bringing a rare gravity to the familiar piece, intensifying the pathos where, at the pause immediately following the peak of the crescendo, I heard a gasp from the audience.
Jazz standards were a major part of the evening's set. Micarelli's violin took up the vocal line on Gershwin's “Someone to Watch Over Me,” giving it a pleasant old-timey spin. A lesser known jazz standard by Tommy Wolf, “Spring Can Really Hang You Up the Most” (a jazzy take on the opening line of T.S. Eliot's “The Waste Land”) became a duet between Thies and Micarelli, the violin handling the vocal line with a 50s vibe and the piano swinging it in the center with a cool hot hand.
It was David Simon, one of the creators of Treme, who not only gave Micarelli the chance to play music outside her comfort zone, but also coaxed her into singing, where she discovered she could.
Micarelli possesses an edgy mezzo with authentic, rounded tones. She sang Steve Earle's Grammy and Primetime Emmy nominated “This City” with a lingering sensibility that was a perfect fit for the song, Freebairn-Smith supplying the haunting harmonies. Bass, piano and guitar backed Micarelli on a soulful “Time After Time,” her dad's favorite tune, which she sang with a full heart, Amuedo contributing a sweet guitar solo, then teaming up again with her for a sensual take on the Nat Cole standard, "Nature Boy.”
The versatility continued with “Ladies Fancy,” an old-time fiddle tune, Hammond and Dellinger flanking Micarelli as they tore up the room. The band's angle on "Will o' the Wisp" from Miles Davis's Sketches of Spain, featured the crisp and layered work of Amuedo, the languid violins and cello hypnotic and seductive, suggesting something elusive. A Danish folk song “Old Reinlender” revved things up, Freebairn-Smith and Walker going col legno (striking their strings with the side of their bows), lifting the peppy tune while Hammond and Micarelli launched into a fevered duet.
“Tzigane,” which Micarelli classified as “gypsy jazz,” proved again that the violin, like eggs and potatoes, can be served up in so many ways! She dramatically exploited the lower range of her instrument with snappy arpeggios that streaked upward, angling for a race to the end, while Thies tracked her every step of the way.
After a high-flying violin quote from Sibelius, the band launched into Zeppelin's “Kashmir,” Robert Plant's voice now Micarelli's violin, the band pounding forward, and the crowd exploding.
Dellinger traded in his viola for a banjo to accompany Micarelli with a final message: “'Hard Times' come again no more.”
This was an evening of musical enlightenment by a gifted ensemble, facilitated by a joyful sprite who lacked all pretense, making an uncommon connection with the audience. Micarelli was full of appreciation and love for the crowd and the stagehands, expressing how it was a privilege to play this music and share it with us. Indeed, she reminded us that "the greatest thing you'll ever learn is just to love and be loved in return."
Playing for love: Lucia Micarelli puts the music first
By John Wirt | Special to The Advocate
If Lucia Micarelli followed the conventional path for classical music virtuosos, she’d be playing violin concertos in the world’s great concert halls. The strict musical regimen she experienced until she was 17 dictated that would be her fate.
Raised in New York and Hawaii, Micarelli began music studies at age 3. She performed as a soloist with the Honolulu Symphony Orchestra when she was 6. And she enrolled in the Juilliard School of Music’s pre-college division at 11.
Micarelli didn’t even listen to nonclassical music until she left Juilliard to attend the Manhattan School of Music.
“I wasn’t allowed to listen to anything but classical music,” the violinist, singer and actress said in advance of her Sunday concert at the Manship Theatre. “But then I went to college. I heard Led Zeppelin, Pink Floyd, (John) Coltrane and Miles Davis, all in the same week. I was like, ‘Whaa-aat?’ I thought this stuff was so out there. And, like every teenaged boy, I wanted to play every Led Zeppelin guitar solo, but on the violin.”
Led Zeppelin’s “Kashmir,” is now part of Micarelli’s eclectic repertoire. The violinist’s latest album, taken from her PBS special, “An Evening with Lucia Micarelli,” includes the rock classic as well as the jazz standard “Nature Boy”; old-time fiddle tune “Ladies Fancy”; and classical pieces by Maurice Ravel, Camille Saint-Saëns and Samuel Barber. Micarelli also performs “This City,” a song composed by Steve Earle, the Texas singer-songwriter Micarelli co-starred with on “Treme,” the HBO series set in post-Hurricane Katrina New Orleans. At the Manship Theatre, Micarelli will be joined her touring group, which includes a second violinist, viola, cello, bass, guitar and piano.
Obviously, the variety set Micarelli performs is a big departure from classical concerts and recitals. That doesn’t mean she’s abandoned her training.
“I am a classical violinist,” she said. “I enjoy playing and attending classical concerts. But I’m so musically curious that I don’t want to present a purely classical show now.”
Living and working in New Orleans while she played Annie Talarico in “Treme” greatly expanded Micarelli’s musicianship. Before that experience she hadn’t done much improvising or known about the kaleidoscope of music played in New Orleans.
“Before ‘Treme,’ I thought New Orleans music was a genre,” she said. “I didn’t know about traditional jazz and Cajun music. I’d never heard of zydeco. As time goes by, I realize more and more what a formative experience that was for me.”
David Simon, executive producer and co-creator of “Treme,” threw the first-time actor into her role as Annie.
“When I got to New Orleans,” she said, “David asked me, ‘Have you ever played trad?’ I was like, ‘I don’t know what that is.’ ”
Simon informed Micarelli she’d be filming a scene with the Jazz Vipers in a few days. He suggested she prep for it by attending a Jazz Vipers’ show at The Spotted Cat on Frenchmen Street. When Micarelli went to the show, the Vipers invited her to join them on stage.
“I was like, ‘I don’t know what to do!’ ” she recalled. “They said, ‘It’s OK. Let’s just play music.’ ”
Micarelli’s first try at sitting in with the Jazz Vipers was a disaster, she said. “After the set, I was so apologetic. Somebody said, ‘Why don’t you sit in with us again tomorrow night? It can only get better.’ ”
By the time they shot the scene for “Treme,” Micarelli was able to play some solos and make it work, “all because of the Jazz Vipers’ generosity,” she said. “I found that generosity over and over in New Orleans. People taught me stuff. They were so willing to help.”
In addition to playing musical styles she’d never performed before, Micarelli made her singing debut on “Treme.” Now, during her genre-crossing concerts, she especially loves singing “This City.”
“The song encapsulates so much of New Orleans and how I feel about that city,” she said. “I sing ‘This City’ because I love that song so much and I’m so moved by it.”
At least for now, Micarelli plans to play only music she loves.
“This is what I want to share with people,” she said.
Read More at theadvocate.com
VIOLINIST LUCIA MICARELLI’S TREMENDOUS 2018 CONTINUES WITH DEBUT LIVE ALBUM ‘AN EVENING WITH LUCIA MICARELLI’ (SEPTEMBER 28)
MAJOR U.S. HEADLINING FALL TOUR INCLUDES NYC’S SOCIETY FOR ETHICAL CULTURE NOVEMBER 10
Young violinist, singer, and actress Lucia Micarelli will release her debut live album ‘An Evening With Lucia Micarelli’ on September 28, distributed by the Arts Music division at Warner Music Group. The physical version of the album will be released October 5. Lucia attended the Juilliard School from the age of 11, where she studied with the legendary pedagogue Dorothy DeLay. She later continued her studies with Pinchas Zukerman at the Manhattan School of Music. She has performed with a host of musical superstars and also had a leading role in HBO's series "Treme," about post-Katrina New Orleans. Her tremendous 2018 includes this live album release and a major U.S. fall headlining tour. ‘An Evening With Lucia Micarelli’ features 16 songs, culled from a live concert PBS special that has been viewed by millions since it began airing nationwide last spring. Lucia is also featured on the cover of Strings Magazine’s September issue.
Lucia is an animated, emotional performer, and an insatiable listener who selected a wildly diverse setlist for this concert. She gracefully segues from the exploratory works of Ravel, like his “Sonata for Violin and Cello,” to beloved jazz standards like “Nature Boy” and “Spring Can Really Hang You Up The Most.” Also included are works by French composer Camille Saint-Saens and Samuel Barber. Lucia sets the mood quickly with opener “Ladies Fancy,” a gripping, full-throttle old-time fiddle tune that she and her band shine on. “This City” is an Americana love letter that her co-star Steve Earle wrote for the city of New Orleans and performed on ‘Treme,’ while Lucia closes down the show with fireworks - a strings rendition of Zeppelin’s “Kashmir.”
Watch a clip of Lucia performing “Nature Boy” from the PBS special:
Watch a teaser for the full PBS special:
The album was recorded on June 3, 2017 at the Music Academy of the West in Santa Barbara, CA. Lucia’s ensemble includes one additional violinist, a violist, two cellists, piano, bass, guitar, drums, and percussion. The PBS version of ‘An Evening With Lucia Micarelli’ has been airing since March, broadcast over 400 times in over 110 markets in that month alone. The concert film also tells Lucia’s inspiring story, in which she overcame a terrible accident that almost ended her career.
Lucia says she has very few memories without a violin in her hand, and was performing with symphony orchestras by age 6. She has been a featured soloist in two of Josh Groban’s world tours. She toured extensively with Chris Botti and was featured in his “Live From Boston” PBS special, as well as Barbra Streisand’s 2013 international tour. She has released two solo albums, “Music From A Farther Room” and “Interlude.”
TRACKLIST FOR ‘AN EVENING WITH LUCIA MICARELLI’
1. Ladies Fancy
3. Gabriel’s Oboe
4. This City
5. Sonata For Violin And Cello, Second Movement
6. Introduction & Rondo Capriccioso In A Minor, Op. 28
7. Spring Can Really Hang You Up The Most
9. Someone To Watch Over Me
10. Time After Time
11. Will O' The Wisp (From 'El Amor Brujo')
12. Sonata For Violin And Piano
13. Adagio For Strings
14. Nature Boy
15. Violin Concerto In D Minor, Op. 47
September 23 – Baton Rouge, LA – Manship Theatre
September 26 – Atlanta GA – Variety Playhouse
September 28 – Ft. Lauderdale, FL – Parker Playhouse
September 29 – Tampa, FL – Ferguson Hall - Straz Center
October 4 – Orange, CA – Music Center at Chapman University
October 6 – Escondido, CA – California Center for the Arts
October 9 – Columbus, OH – Lincoln Theatre
October 10 – Royal Oak, MI – Royal Oak Music Theatre
October 11 – Cleveland, OH – Ohio Theatre
October 12 – Chicago, IL – Park West
October 13 – Milwaukee, WI – Wilson Theater at Bogel Hall
October 14 – St. Paul, MN – Fitzgerald Theater
October 20 – Chandler, AZ – Chandler Center for the Arts
October 26 – Santa Monica, CA – Broad Stage
October 28 – Medford, OR – Craterian Theater at The Collier Center for the Performing Arts
October 29 – Seattle, WA – Illsley Ball Nordstrom Recital Hall - Benaroya Hall
October 30 – Portland, OR – Alberta Rose Theatre
November 7 – Boston, MA – The Wilbur
November 8 – Huntington, NY – The Paramount
November 9 – Glenside, PA – Keswick Theater
November 10 – New York, NY – Concert Hall at the NY Society for Ethical Culture
November 17 – Arlington, TX – Arlington Music Hall
PRE-ORDER THE ALBUM HERE: https://w.lnk.to/aneveningwith
One of the nicest reviews by a fan ever!
Name: Karin Faulkner
Subject: Lucia Micarelli @ Mendocino Music Festival !!
Oh My ! Susan & Allan,
I'm still on the Lucia Micarelli cloud today. Liz bought the CD last night and loaned it to me this morning. It's wonderful (and with pics and vids from her website it really comes alive). It also reminds me, in its absence, how much her patter delighted us all last night. Has anyone ever-anywhere heard the still musically relevant music of a 17th C folksong described thus, "It was written, played and shared and I guess it went viral! " with a shrug of her shoulders in a long, tight one-shouldered gown?
She included a meaningful and touching anecdote about her aged father, unable to speak due to Parkinson's and thus locked up in frustration. During a visit, to which she had brought her violin, they discovered he could sing all the words and melody of songs she played. Teared up, she played and sang his favorite, "Time After Time" and was slightly tearful afterward, and allowed herself a moment to finish her tears with a bit of apology to the audience - who replied with soft applause.
She introduced her viola player's attributes which included 'He gives TED talks. I mean he's a guy who gives TED talks. You should check this out !" And went on to introduce her violinist, a chamber musician, composer, arranger and more, then saying " ... and he has this strong guy and softness thing going which I think is sexy - so I married him. I am so lucky. I married him !" more applause.
Introduced a Saint-Sans piece which followed a Ravel, "This is another sassy French one."
She shared with us all late in the program, as stagehands moved several chairs off the stage, as they had been coming and going between pieces, "I just feel so terrible that they have to carry so many chairs around al the time for us" giggles from the audience, "No, I mean it. This makes me feel so sad" with a big gesture of her bow in the direction the chairs had gone.
You guys, I've been quite a purist about my adoration of Classical music with big bold capital C. Mourned its diminuendo in MMF's program, while easily understanding the necessity to bring in a wider audience to survive. Lucia's performance is a compelling bridge. I doubt there are more musicians of her calibre, fire, artistic daring and rarer still, accessible human tenderness. The love and respect and big smiles flowed between Lucia and her group as beautifully and genuinely as the music.
During the bows she took during a long-lasting standing ovation she said, "You guys are so great ! Mendocino is amazing. I'd love to live here." I'm sure I'm not the only local who was there last night musing today on how blissful that would be for all of us.
Thanks for bringing her to Mendocino,
I'm already eager to see/hear her in next year's program,
Love to you both,
Las Vegas Magazine
BY MATT KELEMEN
MARCH 16, 2018
Q&A: LUCIA MICARELLI
Violinist Lucia Micarelli established herself in the classical music world before age 21 by serving as concertmaster for Trans-Siberian Orchestra, then Josh Groban. She subsequently toured with Jethro Tull and Chris Botti before being cast in the HBO series Treme, which led to her absorbing an eclectic range of musical styles. Micarelli spoke with Las Vegas Magazine’s Matt Kelemen about blending classical music and classic rock, and the practice of practicing. She performs at the Smith Center on March 22-23.
How do you maintain your skills at this stage? Do you practice scales when you can, or set aside time when your schedule doesn’t include rehearsing for shows?
Oh, yeah, I set aside time every day. I still … what is it like to practice at this point? It’s still just as hard as it ever was. There’s just endless work to do. You can always refine things and make it better. And also it’s not something where just because you get the information in, it necessarily stays. Every day is different. You’re still doing something physically. It is physical, mostly. It’s a physical craft, so if you skip a day or skip two days, or skip a week, it’s probably the same as if you were an athlete and skipped training for a week. When you come back you don’t have as good of a time, your lungs aren’t working as well (laughs). It’s still a commitment every day, and it’s, uh … it’s my sacred time. I’m pretty crazy about it.
I imagine you can take yourself into some pretty amazing places with all of the musical directions you’ve explored.
(Laughs) That’s very nice of you. I am trying to do the music that I love justice. I’ve been really lucky in that I’ve met so many incredible people and have kind of been exposed to a lot of different styles of things, so therefore have fallen in love with a lot of different styles of music. I’m in no means an expert in any of those areas, so there’s plenty to practice for, you know? Whether it’s working on technique and virtuosity in classical stuff, or just trying to have a more refined interpretation, or more nuance in my sound in jazz stuff, there’s always things that I’m trying to get better at and still try to refine. I do think that part of what keeps it interesting is that I play so many different kinds of music now, so I’ve always got something to practice. And there’s always something that doesn’t sound quite right to me, so …
An Evening with Lucia Micarelli - coming to a PBS station near you!
Thirteen WNET New York - March 3rd at 7pm
Arizona PBS - March 3rd at 7pm
Vegas PBS - March 3rd at 9pm
WGBH in Boston - March 4th at 3:30pm
KQED in San Francisco - March 5th at 8pm
ATL PBS in Atlanta - March 7th at 7pm
WOSU Public Media in Columbus - March 8th at 10pm
Milwaukee PBS - March 11th at 6:30pm
TPT - Twin Cities PBS in Minneapolis - March 12th at 8:30pm
WPBT2 South Florida PBS - March 12th at 8pm
WTTW - Chicago PBS - March 13th at 7:30pm
PBS SoCal - March 13th at 9pm
Detroit Public Television - March 15th at 8pm
WEDU Public Media in Tampa - March 16th at 9pm
WHYY in Philadelphia - March 18th at 8pm
And many many more! Check out your local listing and support your local PBS station!
Dates and times subject to change without notice. Check local listings. ***
Lucia Micarelli grew up on classical music. She’s since devoured jazz, pop and rock.
BY ED CONDRAN, Correspondent - The News & Observer
January 26, 2018 04:35 PM
After Lucia Micarelli won a violin competition while coming of age in New York, she headed off to Sizzler to celebrate.
“That was my reward, and I would order the steak and baked potato and just live it up,” Micarelli recalls with a laugh. “It was the coolest thing for a kid. It was what I lived for.”
And what happened when Micarelli, 34, failed to take first place? “It was back to the practice room for me,” she says.
Endless practice sessions paid off for Micarelli, who has become an acclaimed violinist with an esteemed resume. Micarelli, who will perform Friday at the Cary Arts Center, has made a name for herself as a solo recording artist.
But before she struck out on her own, the musician, who is of Korean and Italian heritage, toured with Chris Botti, Josh Groban and Ian Anderson of Jethro Tull fame.
“All of those guys were amazing with me,” Micarelli says. “It continued my education.”
Her first big break was a gig with Trans-Siberian Orchestra a decade ago.
“That was my first experience with a massive show,” Micarelli says, calling from her Los Angeles home. “I remember when I got the job, they asked if I had an electric violin and I didn’t. They made one specifically for me. The big rock thing that TSO does was alien to me at that time, but it worked out well. Rock was so new to me.”
Micarelli, who grew up strictly on classical, devoured other styles of music as she became an adult, including jazz, pop and rock.
“I remember the first time I heard jazz in a New York club, and I was like, ‘What the hell is this?’ I was just blown away,” she says. “Then I immersed myself in classic rock with Led Zeppelin and Pink Floyd. It was super cool. But I grew up so much after being with TSO and being exposed to many cool styles of music for the first time.”
Micarelli’s horizons were broadened by her plum gig as an actress in David Simon’s acclaimed HBO drama “Treme,” which ran from 2010 to 2013.
“There was nothing like that show,” Micarelli says. “I improved dramatically as an entertainer because of that experience. David cast me as a street musician. I was part of telling the real story of what Hurricane Katrina was like for New Orleans. David was so in love with New Orleans, and I benefited from that experience.”
She sat in with New Orleans street musicians and met Cajun fiddle players. She met Steve Earle, too, a musician she admired.
“I got to play with him, which was awesome,” she said. “Steve pushed me to write a song. I’m so indebted to him. I wouldn’t trade that experience for anything. I learned so much about music, and I fell in love with a unique city.”
Her solo albums have included compelling versions of such classics as David Bowie’s “Lady Grinning Soul” and Queen’s “Bohemian Rhapsody.”
“An Evening With Lucia Micarelli,” which was filmed in Santa Barbara, Calif., last summer, will air on PBS in March. “That was amazing,” Micarelli says. “How often does a musician get a night like that on PBS?”
Even though Micarelli has been playing many different styles of music, she still reaches back for classical.
“I do it for my mother,” Micarelli says. “When I was doing ‘Treme,’ I wasn’t playing classical. My mom would ask, ‘What’s up with that?’ One episode I worked out that I played some (Felix) Mendelssohn. I told my mom that it was for her.
“I put all of my heart and soul into classical when I was a child. It wasn’t an easy childhood. When other kids were out playing, I was practicing indoors. But if I didn’t work so hard, I wouldn’t be doing this today. So now those kids are adults working inside and I’m out playing all around the world with my violin, thanks to my parents.”
Violinist Lucia Micarelli on coming back after injury, performing in Santa Barbara
Audiences all over the world were mesmerized by her playing, playing with everyone from Josh Groban to Jethro Tull. Then on July 4, 2009, one slip put the whole thing in jeopardy.
Lucia Micarelli: An Evening with Lucia Micarelli
Violinist and actress Lucia Micarelli visits The Treatment to discuss her emotive performances as she prepares for PBS' An Evening with Lucia Micarelli.
Check out some highlights from Lucia's last solo show...
Watch Lucia record a virtuosic solo for the League of Legends soundtrack in this fantastic documentary - "Frequencies - The Music of League of Legends". (Find her around the 28 minute mark!)
Lucia guest-stars in Episode 10 of "Manhattan" (WGN), playing Annie Liao, the wife of an accused spy. Set in 1943 at the time of the Manhattan Project, the critically acclaimed series follows a sequestered group of physicists in Los Alamos racing to develop the first atomic bombs during World War II.
Lucia attended the 2014 Emmy Awards in support of HBO's "Treme", nominated for Best Miniseries and Outstanding Writing for a Miniseries.
Lucia was featured on the cover of Strings Magazine! Click above to read the article.
"Emmys: Love for the Longest of Shots" - A lovely article by Tim Goodman of The Hollywood Reporter. Click above to read.