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Brown bag it to Fuller Lodge

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By The Staff

The new year will be greeted with music during the upcoming Los Alamos Arts Council Brown Bag concert at 12:30 p.m. Jan. 2 at Fuller Lodge.The program for the first Brown Bag concert of 2008 will include “Clarinet, Cello and Piano,” by Mary Lynn Place Badarak, musical director of the Los Alamos Choral Society, and “Piano Quartet No. 1, Op. 15 in C Minor,” by Gabriel Faur.Musicians performing these works include members of the Los Alamos Piano Quartet, Cindy Little, piano; Brian Newnam, violin; Kathy Gursky, viola; and James Knudson, cellist.Joe Fasel, clarinet; will also take the stage with the Los Alamos Trio, which includes Knudson and Little.A real highlight of the event, Newnam said, will be the piece by Faur. “(It is) the most recorded quartet of the type. (It is) very beloved, warm and fanciful,” he said.Newnam explained the quartet will be performing a similar concert in Santa Fe and decided it was such wonderful work that they wanted to play it again. “So we’re bringing it here,” he said.Newnam added members of the quartet are well known throughout Los Alamos. For instance, Little is a native of Los Alamos where she studied with local pianist, Sara Beene. Little is a graduate of Arizona State University where she received a Bachelor of Arts degree in piano performance. She was the piano accompanist for the Sangre de Cristo Chorale for 15 years; currently, she accompanies the Los Alamos Choral Society. Since 2003, Little has appeared in concerts with the Trio de Los Alamos. At Los Alamos National Laboratory, she performs data analysis and controls for scientific satellites.Additionally, Newnam was active in a number of Los Angeles orchestras and chamber music groups before coming to Los Alamos in 1972 to work at LANL as a laser physicist. In northern New Mexico, he has performed with several regional orchestras, including the Orchestra of Santa Fe and the San Juan Symphony and chamber music ensembles. Newnam plays an Italian violin made in 1745 by Antonio Zanotti of Mantua.Gursky is a Los Alamos native. She has performed in local and regional chamber music ensembles and orchestras while maintaining her career at LANL as a librarian and database coordinator. In recent years she has been a member of the viola section of the Roswell Symphony Orchestra. Gursky plays an Italian viola made in 1975 by Enzo Barbieri of Mantua.Knudson is a technical staff member at the Los Alamos Neutron Scattering Center. Prior to moving to Los Alamos in 1986, he performed with several orchestras in Bloomington, Indiana and Winnipeg, Manitoba. In northern New Mexico, he has performed with the Los Alamos Symphony Orchestra, the Santa Fe Community Orchestra and the Santa Fe Symphony. Knudson plays an American cello made in 2004 by Georg Albeck of Santa Fe. Fasel also lives in White Rock and is a technical staff member at LANL. He is an active instrumentalist (clarinetist, recorder and an assortment of early instruments) and singer.Fasel is also a member of the board of directors for Kammermusik Workshops Inc.Musicians are not the only local representatives. The Professional Music Teachers of New Mexico (PMTNM) commissioned Mexico Badarak to compose the “Trio for Clarinet, Cello and Piano.” The Los Alamos trio performed the piece for the first time Nov. 11 during the 57th annual State Conference of the PMTNM in Farmington.Badarak's list of compositions are published and performed worldwide, notably, her award-winning Christmas carol, “Brightest and Best.” Additionally, Badarak's settings of Denise Levertov's poems were performed by soprano Arietha Lockhart on her New York Debut recital in Carnegie Hall in 2003 and Badarak's composition “Epiphanies for Violin and Organ” was premiered in Grace Cathedral in San Francisco early this year.Badarak received her undergraduate degree in music from the University of California, and her Ph.D. in Music Theory from Northwestern. She has taught music theory and composition at the University of California, Santa Cruz and at Georgia State University.She is currently the music director of the Los Alamos Choral Society and is artistic director of Santa Fe Music Works where she has presented a series of choral workshops featuring the masterworks of Mozart, Brahms and Vaughan Williams.Two of her Masterworks Chorale Workshops have traveled to New York City to perform in Carnegie Hall and in the summer of 2009 Santa Fe Music Works will travel to Vienna to sing in the International Haydn Festival.The concert is free and open to everyone.