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Jason DePue to serve up classical souffle PDF Print E-mail
Written by DAVID DUPONT Sentinel Arts & Entertainment Editor   
Tuesday, 09 April 2013 09:34
Jason DePue returns to Bowling Green Friday to pay tribute to one of his first teachers who helped him navigate both the violin and the turbulence of life.
DePue will perform a recital of music for violin and piano Friday at 8 p.m. in the Bryan Recital Hall in the Moore  Center for Musical Arts on the Bowling Green State University campus. Dr. Laura Melton, of the BGSU faculty, will be the pianist.
The recital, DePue said recently in a telephone interview , is intended as a tribute to Vasile Beluska. "I thought it would be nice to demonstrate my gratitude to him," he said.
DePue, the third of violin playing sons of composer Wallace DePue Sr,, started studying violin at 4 with his father's Bowling Green State University colleague Boris Brant.
In January 1986, when young DePue was 9, Brant died. Two weeks later his mother died in an auto accident.
DePue said this marks the end of the first chapter of his life. "Chapter two of my life started with Mr. Beluska," he said.
Beluska, a native of Romania, had just joined the university faculty. His storied career included studying in a master class with Jascha Heifetz.
DePue ended up studying with Beluska until he graduated from Bowling Green High School in 1995.
DePue said Beluska helped guide his career. "He was a very unpossessive teacher. He was always willing to have me take lessons with other teachers," he said. Even in summers when DePue and Beluska would be at the same festivals, "he would insist on my studying with someone other than him." Beluska is dedicated to "making sure his students got the best tutelage possible, not only from him."
In honor of Beluska he is performing Bela Bartok's "Romanian Folk Dances."
The program is packed with favorite pieces, "little gems for piano and violin." Those include his father's "Serenade."
The centerpiece will be Johannes Brahms' Sonata in G Major, one of masterpieces in the violin sonata literature.
Also on the program will be pieces by Pablo de Sarasate, John Williams, Fritz Kreisler, Antonio Bazzini, Camille Saint-Saens and Maurice Ravel.
"It's a light classical program," he said.
This is his first collaboration with Melton. He'd been her name along with a couple others as possible pianists, and she responded first. "It's always exciting to collaborate with new musicians," DePue said.
DePue has been in the first violin section of the Philadelphia Orchestra since 2000. After weathering a financial crisis a few years ago, the orchestra "is only on the rise," he said.
He's excited to be working with the new musical director Yannick Nezet-Sequin. A Quebec-born musician who is just a year or so older than DePue.
The orchestra has signed a recording deal with Deutsche Grammophon, with the first CD forthcoming. It will include pieces closely tied to the orchestra's history: Igor Stravinsky's "Rite of Spring" and three orchestrations of Bach organ works by its legendary conductor Leopold Stokowski. One of the organ pieces and the "Rite" will be familiar to fans of Disney's "Fantasia," which featured Stokowski conducting the Philadelphia Orchestra.
DePue also stays active with the DePue Brothers Band. He and eldest brother Wallace DePue Jr., who is one of the concertmasters for the Philadelphia Pops Orchestra and an instrument dealer, maintain the ensemble and perform regularly. They are joined brothers Zachary DePue, concertmaster of the Indianapolis Symphony and member of Time for Three, and Alex DePue, who works in California and Mexico, as their schedules allow.
"Playing with my brothers is a priority," he said. "Whenever we play together that's a great thing."

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