Heights High senior viola soloist Charlotte Sperl will perform tonight at 7:30 at Cleveland Heights High School.
She'll play the Viola Concerto, B minor, in the Style of Handel, and the Heights High Symphony will accompany her.
Cleveland Heights Patch spoke to 17-year-old Charlotte this week. Below are excerpts from the interview.
Cleveland Heights Patch: Why did you select this specific piece to perform?
Charlotte Sperl: My teacher was the first one who suggested it to me because I wasn’t sure which pieces to look at. I went home and I listened to it and I just really liked it. It's energetic and it’s lively and it’s just really fun. It’s virtuosic a little bit but it’s also familiar sounding because it’s written based on Handel’s style of composing music.
CHP: How long have you been working on this piece, and how are you preparing for this Friday?
CS: I always kind of wanted a senior solo, but last year in the spring of my junior year, I mentioned it to my teacher and she thought it was a great idea. So I chose a piece. I auditioned in October ... I was nervous, as anyone would be I guess, but I had been playing it for a while. I performed in front of my friends and family, and I played it at my church and I guess I had been playing it a while before I went into the audition. I had chance to perform it so I felt pretty comfortable with it.
CHP: How do you feel about Friday? Are you excited? Nervous? Both?
CS: I think it will be exciting because it’s a moment where I get to step out into the spotlight. It’s also a big deal. People take it seriously — it’s such a great honor. It’s like being famous for a week or two, so it’s really fun. I’m really looking forward to coming out on stage and having all my friends and family there. I’m looking forward to sharing this piece that I’ve been working on for so long.
CHP: How long have you been playing the viola, and how did you choose that particular instrument? It doesn't get the spotlight too often in concerts.
CS: It’s just great just because you don’t really get to hear a viola solo very often, so that’s pretty exciting.
I started playing in fourth grade. I was planning on playing cello ... but then my sister played the cello and I guess I decided instead of playing cello, same as her, I wanted something different. After hearing it a little bit I realized how much I liked the sound.
CHP: Is there something I didn't ask you that you'd like to add?
CS: My orchestra teacher, Daniel Heim — he’s been great. He plays the viola also so he’s been really helpful with everything ... He’s a great conductor.
CHP: This isn't really related to your concert, but is your dad the one who gives out free donuts each year?
CS: (Laughs) Yes, I'm a Sperl.
For more information about Sperl and the performance, visit the Cleveland Heights-University Heights School District website.