Two contemporary African-American composers shared the spotlight with Bach, Turina, Ellington, and Piazzolla at the Sphinx Organization Gala at Carnegie Hall last night. Cellist Tahirah Whittington held a sold-out Stern captive with Coleridge-Taylor Perkinson’s “Perpetual Motion” from his Lamentations Suite for solo cello. A fierce, prolonged flourish perfect for a charismatic performer, its aggression contrasted nicely with the similarly Bluegrass-inspired Delights and Dances for string quartet and string orchestra by Michael Abels. Performed by the Harlem Quartet, Delights is a pleasant work which Edgar Meyer fans will find plenty congenial. The zippy, high-flying finale had the audience on their feet (though not this reviewer), and one left the hall grateful for the good work Sphinx does. Congratulations to them on their tenth anniversary.

Comments are closed.