The mastery of music is a complex and life-defining task that requires hours of practice and lessons, often including frustration.

For two of Cal Poly’s own, however, those hours have yielded a lifelong passion for music.

The Cal Poly music department will host a classical recital featuring two of its own staff members Jacalyn Kreitzer and Susan Azaret Davies Saturday at 8 p.m. in the Alex and Faye Spanos Theater.

The recital titled “Orchestral Solos for Mezzo-Soprano,” will include the works or Gioacchino Rossini, Johann Sebastian Bach, Hector Berlioz, Leonard Bernstein, Sergei Prokofiev and Gustav Mahler.

The recital will also include a 1938 film created by Sergei Alexander and produced by order of Stalin. The film goes along with a piece they will perform by Sergei Prokofiev, an original score from the picture.

The film will be projected on a screen while Kreitzer and Azaret Davies play the score in real time.

“I believe the students should hear their teacher,” Kreitzer said. “I like to bring in the pieces I have done over the years so that they can hear something different.”

Kreitzer, a mezzo-soprano, teaches voice and diction as well as produces and directs an annual student opera production.

A mezzo-soprano has a voice that has a similar high range and low range to a soprano, but a mezzo has a darker tone, Kreitzer said.

During her career she has performed with a number of the world’s most renowned opera companies and orchestras including the Los Angles Philharmonic, the Metropolitan Opera, Deusche Opera Berlin and the San Francisco Opera among others.

“It was a great career, but when you have a family it is hard,” Kreitzer said.

It was necessary to limit touring to six or seven times a year in order to raise her children.

“This is my 11th year teaching at Cal Poly,” Kreitzer said. “Cal Poly is a great school.”

Azaret Davies performs as a singer as well as a pianist. During her time at Cal Poly she teaches piano and accompanying.

“She (Azaret Davies) has a beautiful voice,” Kreitzer said. “She’s like a sister to me – one of the best in the world.”

The feeling is mutual.

“I love to work with Jackie,” Azaret Davies said. ” She has a beautiful voice and I love playing with her.”

During the recital, however, Azaret Davies will not be singing. Instead, she will be playing orchestral arrangements rearranged for the piano.

Azaret Davies has also performed at a number of local events including the Oregon Bach Festival, Cabrillo Festival, Long Beach Festival and many others.

Her performances have come in numerous capacities and she has performed seriously as a singer as well as a pianist.

The duo has performed in this manner on numerous occasions, stating that they like to do it every couple of years.

“The profits are going to fund the choir/wind orchestra trip to Europe, Vienna and Hungary in July,” Kreitzer said.

Tickets to the recital are $10 for the public and $6 for senior citizens and students.

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