The Oberlin Review

Performance Highlights Identity, History of Indigenous Musicians

Performance Highlights Identity, History of Indigenous Musicians

October 27, 2017

Oki Kano, professionally known as OKI, began singing before the applause died down from the packed audience in Fairchild Chapel. The Ainu performer, along with protegé and friend Nate Renner, came to Oberlin as part of The Luce Initiative on Asian Studies and the Environment grant that the College recently received. The two musicians participated in an informal chat at Cowhaus Creamery on Monday, performed their music in Fairchild on Tuesday, and gave a lecture at the Adam Joseph Lewis Center on Wed...

Post-Punk Band Big Ups Returns to the ’Sco with Halloween Special

Ananya Gupta, Arts and Culture Editor

October 27, 2017

Filed under ARTS, Music

Big Ups, a post-hardcore punk band, will bring a holiday-themed performance to the ’Sco on Halloween. Its four members — Joe Galarraga, Amar Lal, Brendan Finn, and Carlos Salguero Jr. — formed the band at New York University in 2013. Their ’Sco performance is a pit stop between their recently-concluded fall tour with METZ and Toronto’s Dilly Dally. Their next tour starts in St. Louis, Nov. 2. Tough Love Records describes Big Ups’ music as a “blend [of] punk, post-punk, metal and indie rock into a salty mash that gets stuck to the roof of your mouth.” Big Ups has released two albums so far. Their debut, Eighteen Hours of Static, was followed by Before a Million Universes. The title of their second al...

Conference Addresses Intersections of Race, Aesthetics

Conference Addresses Intersections of Race, Aesthetics

October 6, 2017

“Exploring Beauty and Truth in World of Color,” a conference which took place over last Friday and Saturday, highlighted new and groundbreaking work on the subject of race and aesthetics from Oberlin academics and scholars from many other institutions. The two-day conference, which had wide community appeal, explored essential conversations about the role of Blackness and Black aesthetics in diverse art forms. For Associate Professor of Africana Studies Charles Peterson, the driving organizin...

Dead South Brings Dark Punk Folk Music to Cat

Kirsten Heuring, Staff Writer

September 29, 2017

Filed under ARTS, Music

When I saw, “Honk if you love rhubarb” written in dirt on the back of The Dead South’s trailer, I knew that Wednesday night’s concert was going to be interesting. Though I arrived half an hour early, the Cat in the Cream was already more than half full with people from not just Oberlin, but as far afield as Houston and Columbus; the band had performed in Columbus Tuesday night, and some audience members had followed them to Oberlin to see them perform a second time. By the time the concert started, there was standing room only. The Dead South came out looking like a group of punk Amish, dressed in distinctive dark clothes. The lead singer, Nate Hilts, was sporting the largest hat I had ever seen. The band, ...

Punch Brothers Infuse Bluegrass with Classical, Jazz Influences

Punch Brothers Infuse Bluegrass with Classical, Jazz Influences

September 29, 2017

The Punch Brothers — a bluegrass band consisting of mandolinist Chris Thile; fiddler and violinist Gabe Witcher; banjo player Noam Pikelny; guitarist Chris Eldridge, OC ’04; and bassist Paul Kowert — returned to Oberlin this week for their fall residency, which culminated with a sold-out concert in Finney Chapel last night. Known for their genre-bending music that incorporates elements of classical and jazz in a bluegrass aesthetic, the Punch Brothers gave a variety of talks and performanc...

Organ Pump in Finney

Organ Pump in Finney

September 29, 2017

Students rush the stage at the first Organ Pump of the school year to feel the vibrations of the organ during the night’s final piece. Organ Pump traditionally involves a mix of great organ pieces and comedy performed in Finney Chapel at midnight once a month, and last Friday was no exception. Organ majors performed works by composers such as Jean Langlais, Camille Saint-Saëns, and Louis Vierne, and — along with some of their friends — sang the Review security report as an Anglican chant an...

Xavier Jara Plays Wide-Ranging Classical Guitar Program

Kate Fishman

September 22, 2017

Filed under ARTS, Music

Classical guitarist and winner of the Guitar Foundation of America’s Rose Augustine Grand Prize Xavier Jara, who performed in Kulas Recital Hall Wednesday night, not only demonstrated his instrument’s impressive time- and genre-crossing capacities, but also shed light on the community of classical guitarists and enthusiasts in Oberlin. Jara’s performance was in fact sponsored by the Oberlin Classical Guitar Association. After Jara gave a masterclass on Monday, he was joined by members of the OCGA — social media coordinator and double-degree senior Mohit Dubey; treasurer and double-degree senior Brian King; and OCGA member and double-degree sophomore Aidan Wiley Lippke — who talked about the poetic names their i...

Jiménez, Ambar Conduct Opening Oberlin Orchestra Concert

Jiménez, Ambar Conduct Opening Oberlin Orchestra Concert

September 22, 2017

To new listeners, orchestral music can seem foreboding, with complex elements and a long history. But last Friday night, the Oberlin Orchestra invited the community to “So may I introduce to you,” an informal, celebratory show to open the year of orchestral performances and demonstrate that orchestral music is for everyone, not just those in the know. An hour before the event’s posted start time, the plaza outside Finney Chapel was already packed with people who had come to enjoy complimen...

Xenia Rubinos, Bémbe Deliver Standout Performances

Xenia Rubinos, Bémbe Deliver Standout Performances

September 22, 2017

Forget casually strolling in at 8 p.m. — if you arrived any later than 7:40 p.m. to the Cat in the Cream last Saturday, you had to follow the line of over 100 people down the hall, around the corner, down a flight of stairs, and straight into the bathroom spaces. Eager Xenia Rubinos fans began lining up at the doors as early as 7:20 p.m. and flooded the space when it finally opened, filling it to capacity within minutes. Energetic conversations made for a bright ambience to start off what woul...

Concert Exemplifies Collaboration in Face of Disaster

Concert Exemplifies Collaboration in Face of Disaster

September 15, 2017

In the wake of the two major hurricanes that have impacted the mainland United States over the past few weeks, communities across the nation have rallied to provide support to those affected. Friday night, students from Oberlin Conservatory joined with the Cleveland Orchestra, the Cleveland Institute of Music, and Credo Music to put on a benefit concert to raise money to support the American Red Cross’ relief efforts in Texas and Florida. The concert — titled “Help After Harvey,” though the fu...

Faculty Recital Demonstrates Variety, Virtuosity

Ivan Aidun, Staff Writer

September 15, 2017

Filed under ARTS, Music

The Oberlin Conservatory’s reputation for virtuosic faculty was thoroughly upheld Saturday night, when Associate Professor of Flute Alexa Still and pianist Allie Su performed three 20th century pieces in Kulas Recital Hall. The recital opened with Sonata in A Minor, Op. 34, by the late Romantic American composer Amy Beach. Beach was the first American woman to reach widespread compositional acclaim, and her Gaelic Symphony was the first symphony composed and published by an American woman. Her Sonata in A Minor was originally for violin and piano, but Still transcribed it for flute and piano during her graduate studies. “I was in a chamber music class with an old professor who was a double bass player,” Still ...

Abdu Ali Delivers Genre-Bending ’Sco Performance

Abdu Ali Delivers Genre-Bending ’Sco Performance

September 1, 2017

Newly arrived students were in for a treat when the ’Sco opened with an exceptionally strong orientation show Satuday night. Baltimore emcee, poet, rapper, and activist Abdu Ali and his crew brought a mix of highly energetic Afro Rave songs that left the audience physically shaken by the performance’s sheer volume. For the first-years who formed their first impressions of the ’Sco that night, the standard for future performances will be set unusually high, while for returning students, thi...

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