Classical musicians
calm audience
Posted December 9, 2005

Audience members were entertained with soothing classical music performed by Jacqueline Petitto on the piano and Beth Mitchell on tuba during a recital last Friday in Founders Auditorium.

Before the recital began, listeners were asked to take their seats with the dimming and flickering of lights in the auditorium.

As the room went dark, silence filled the auditorium as the two performers walked onstage.

With Petitto’s nod of the head, the two women began their set – three upbeat pieces by Johann Sebastian Bach.

Set number two began with the works of Krzysztof Penderecki.

The musicians delighted their audience with additional sets from the classical composers Halsey Stevens, Vittorio Monti, Robert Schumann, Eugene Bozza and Felix Arndt.

“We chose these composers to play tonight because some are fun to play,” Mitchell said.

“Some are challenging and I wanted to stretch myself as a musician,” she added.

Mitchell also performed a solo piece by Penderecki, while together the two performed several upbeat melodies.

The instruments complemented each other with rich beautiful tones.
“I just love playing music, anytime I have a chance to perform and educate for an audience I do,” Mitchell said.

“People usually have preconceived notions about the tuba and I like to show the audience that it’s more than a marching band instrument,” she added.

The musicians were well received by audience members who praised the duo’s variety and song choice.

The audience included students and community members.

Mitchell and Petitto have been performing together for a year.

They met while teaching at Pasadena City College.

Mitchell’s skills as a tuba player have taken her on extensive tours of the United States and Europe.

She has played with the Baltimore Symphony Orchestra. Mitchell has also appeared with the U.S. Navy Band and was national finalist in the Dubec New Music solo competitions.

Mitchell graduated with a bachelor’s degree in tuba performance from the Peabody Conservatory of Music in Baltimore.

Petitto is an active soloist and chamber musician.

She received both her master of music and doctor of musical arts degrees in piano performance from the University of Southern California’s Thorton School of Music.

Petitto received her bachelor of music from Santa Clara University.
She has also taught classes at ULV.

Jaclyn Gonzales can be reached at

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