Strings and Chords: An Evening with David Garrett and Special Guest, Martynas

01|29|2014

 

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What do Metallica, Michael Jackson, and Mozart have in common? Their music has been covered by world-class violin virtuoso, and oh-so-easy-on-the-eyes recording artist, David Garrett.

David was in town with special guest Martynas, for an extraordinary one-night-only performance that took place at the historic City National Civic on January 21, 2014.

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Before the concert, guests had an opportunity to purchase posters and t-shirts that were adorned with images of David Garrett and Martynas. With their swag in hand, guests then made their way into the auditorium.

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Martynas Levickis, a young, bright-eyed Lithuania native, and a true virtuoso of the accordion, known by his stage name, Martynas, opened for David Garrett.

Although the accordion hasn’t always been considered a prestigious instrument, especially one to master, as Martynas started playing various folk music and his rendition of Lady Gaga’s Telephone with immense passion, it was clear that this chord instrument was a true extension of his soul. His high mastery of this “squeeze box” was more than impressive, and watching him play with vigor and excitement left the audience in a state of awe. If his mission is to make the accordion an instrument worthy of respect and admiration, Martynas has certainly accomplished this goal.

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Upon a well-received performance by Martynas, audience members anticipated David’s appearance on stage. Instead of taking the traditional route of emerging on stage with his band, David surprised the audience by coming in through stage left of the pit area. Many of his adoring fans could see him up-close, so, naturally, cell phone cameras popped up like flowers rapidly in bloom, as guests tried to capture David in motion.

David opened with his rendition of Journey’s Eye of the Tiger. He then went on to perform classic compositions by some of his personal favorite musical prodigies such as Beethoven, Mozart, and Chopin, along with songs by modern artists such as the band Cold Play (Viva La Vida), Justin Timberlake (Cry Me a River), and Michael Jackson (Smooth Criminal).

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Between songs, David would share with the audience anecdotes about his life on the road. He explained that, the violin is the instrument of the gypsy, and that he considers himself to be a gypsy since, like a gypsy, he travels from town-to-town, state-to-state, and country-to-country, sharing his talent with the music-lovers everywhere. However, living a gypsy life, as David professed, can at times be lonely, and even though that does not allow for him to have a steady relationship while he is on tour, his constant companion is, and always will be, his perpetual mistress, music.

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David continued his musical odyssey by inviting Martynas to the stage. Together, they performed the profoundly romantic tango song, Por Una Cabesa. Watching the two virtuosos perform solo is a mesmerizing experience–as their intensity and passion cascades through their body like the powerful beauty of a thundering waterfall or a massive ocean wave–but hearing and watching them perform together–as strings and chords intertwine to create a plethora of melodies, notes, and harmonies–was transcending to say the least. The intricate placement of the fingers, the complexity of the movements, and the intermingling of the instruments is astonishing to the onlooker but made so effortlessly by the God-given talents of David and Martynas.

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During the intermission, and as David prepared for his next set, Martynas met with audience members in the lobby and had his photo taken with fans. Fans, both new-and-old, were excited to have their photo taken with such a musical wonder.

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For his second set, David invited Martynas back on stage to play a special song request that was made to him by his manager. As David explained, a request that lasted for ten years, but on in which he did not comply, that is, until this night. David, with the assistance of Martynas, satiated his manager’s request by playing Hava Nagila, a traditional Jewish folk song. As well known as it is, and as upbeat as it is, the audience clapped with the rhythm of the ascending tempo. David’s violin strings and Martynas’ accordion chords were a perfect match for this song.

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David also performed “Music”, the title track off his new album congruently entitled Music.

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A truly thrilling night filled with culture, passion, and, of course, music, David Garrett’s Music tour is one not to be missed.

For more information about David Garrett and his Music tour, please visit:

http://www.david-garrett.com/us

For more information about Martynas, please visit: http://martynasmusic.com/

For more information about Nederlander Concerts please visit:

http://www.nederlanderconcerts.com/

Event Review & Photos by Sophia M. Papadopoulos

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2 comments
Monique Qc
Monique Qc

Thank you for your excellent review and photos Sophia !   Coming from East-Canada, my first trip to California.   I was there that night, in front.  I could very well see David and his band and hear his great music. It was magic !

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