Chiyun Casellas performance took the audience through each musical era. Starting with pieces from Bach and Handel and finishing with a contemporary composer; the recital included the Baroque, Romantic, 20th century and modern musical eras.

“It’s a beautiful survey of music (and) harp development,” said Alicia McQuay, a music professor at BYU-Idaho.

Chiyun and Samuel Casellas outside the Barrus Concert Hall

Chiyun Casellas with husband Samuel Casellas after the recital Photo credit: Emma Lines

Performing a variety of pieces from different musical eras, all of which were memorized, requires practice and skill.

“With her willingness to follow instructions and hard work and tenacity, Chiyun has made leaps and bounds as a harpist and musician,” McQuay said.

Bach’s Sarabande and Double, featured ornamentations while Tournier’s Four Preludes for Two Harps, performed alongside peer Keziah Roderer, expressed lyrical melodies. The last piece Casellas performed, “Baroque Flamenco,” incorporated flamenco-style hand movements, strumming and soundboard effects.

“I liked all of it,” said Jackie Webster, a friend of Casellas.”It was very beautiful and relaxing. I’m very proud of her.”

The conclusion of the recital closed a chapter in Casellas’s undergraduate.

“It’s a relief and a good ending,” Casellas said.

At 14, Casellas was introduced to the harp. She has studied the harp for six of the last 10 years. She started her musical journey at six years old on the piano. Since her arrival at BYU-I in the fall of 2019, Casellas has studied with Alicia McQuay.

For information on future BYU-I concerts, visit the calendar.