Violinist Micarelli honored to play Park City again
June 26, 2015
Violinist and actress Lucia Micarelli had a blast playing at the Eccles Center for the Performing Arts last February during the Park City Institute’s fall and winter concert season. So, to be asked back for the St. Regis Big Stars, Bright Nights Concert Series next week. She was elated.
"The February concert was my first full-length solo shows we have done in Park City and I was already excited and grateful to (Park City Institute Executive Director) Teri Orr for having us and I assume it must have gone well for her to ask us back," Micarelli said during a phone call from tour stop in Ottawa, Canada. "It’s such an honor to be asked back and I was thrilled and super excited."
Micarelli, also known for her role as Annie Talarico in the HBO series "Treme," will be joined during the Big Stars concert with her "Treme" compadres, the Dirty Dozen Brass Band and Funky Meters.
"Treme," which was a drama about the rebuilding of New Orleans after Hurricane Katrina, ran from 2010 to 2013.
"[While] working on that show for four seasons, I was introduced to a lot of fantastic music and groups and both of those bands are really wonderful," Micarelli said. "So, I’m a bit overwhelmed that we’re going to do a show together, let alone I’m on the same bill with them. I can’t wait to hear and see those guys again, because it’s been a few years."
The violinist isn’t sure about the concert format.
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"I’ve talked with my management and we all will probably do our own set, but if we’re able to do something together, I would personally love that," she said.
Throughout her career, Micarelli, a classically trained musician, has introduced classical music to pop audiences and pop music to classical audiences.
In 2003, Micarelli toured with the Trans-Siberian Orchestra, a rock orchestra that performs Christmas concerts in arenas and stadiums across the country.
"That was my first tour, really," she said. "I had never played in front of audiences that big, ever and for the first couple of shows, I was just frozen in place."
Then one of the band members gave her some advice.
"They told me that I needed to be aware of the space I was in and that I needed to reach more people than what I was used to in a concert hall," Micarelli said. "I had to learn about stage presence and how to use the stage physically, which was something as a classical violinist that never crossed my mind."
Since then, she has toured with Josh Groban, Jethro Tull and Chris Botti.
"It’s very important to me to cross genres, because that intersection has been what I have done the majority of my career," Micarelli said. "I mean, I do perform classical music and consider that my real strength, but when I toured with Josh Groban, whose audience isn’t necessarily a classical audience, I learned a lot about how to present classical music to a non-classical audience in a way that they would be more open to listening.
"The tour with Jethro Tull was completely different because it was classic, progressive rock, and now, I’m touring with Chris Botti who has a jazz audience," she said. "I feel like all of these experiences, along with my experiences on ‘Treme,’ filter through my playing and understanding music."
Micarelli feels a big overwhelmed when she stops to think about the different kinds of music she plays.
"It’s amazing to me the broad spectrum that I’ve somehow ended up being involved in," she said. "This is something that I never thought I would be doing when I was attending Juilliard."
The chief benefit of her experiences, however, is learning from different musicians.
"Everyone has taught me something," she said. "That’s the wonderful thing about music and being a musician. You never get to a place where you feel like you’ve mastered something. There is always more to learn and another door to open. I find it exciting and it’s one of the beautiful things about pursuing a craft."
The musician is currently working on her third album, the follow up to 2006’s "Interlude."
The new record, which is yet to be titled, continues the musician’s exploration of different styles.
"All the classical pieces have been reworked and I don’t perform them the way they were originally written," Micarelli said.
One of these works is Samuel Barber’s Adagio for Strings.
"He originally wrote if for a string quartet, and it was very successful for him, so he rearranged it for a string orchestra and then for a choir," Micarelli said. "I’ve always loved this piece and I’ve played the quartet and orchestral version in the past.
"I have always heard this piece as two works intertwined with string accompaniment," she said. "So, we rearranged this piece for violin and cello, with a sextet accompaniment."
The album will also feature some jazz.
"We did a rearrangement of the Gil Evans and Miles Davis version of (Manuel de Falla’s) ‘Will o’ the Whisp’ from the album ‘Sketches of Spain,’" Micarelli said. "We did it with strings instead of a brass band.
"I also did some standards with vocalists and Cajun fiddling, things that I’ve never would have done if I had not been part of ‘Treme,’" she said. "I’m nearly done with it and I’m hoping the album will be released soon."
Micarelli will play some of the new songs during her Deer Valley set.
"This time around, I will bring out a percussionist. I’m really excited about it and have some friends who have played the amphitheater before and they say it’s just magical," she said. "What can be better than that?"
The Park City Institute’s St. Regis Big Stars, Bright Nights Concert Series will present A Night of "Treme," with Lucia Micarelli, the Funky Meters and the Dirty Dozen Brass Band at Deer Valley’s Snow Park Amphitheater on July 3. Showtime is 7 p.m. Tickets range from $55 to $75 and can be purchased by calling 435-655-3114 or visiting http://www.bigstarsbrightnightsconcerts.org.