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Two of the greatest living lutenists play 'University of Chicago Presents' / Chicago Classical Review

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Rare is the opportunity to hear two of the greatest living players of an instrument play together. And rarer still when the instrument is as scarce as the lute. Just such an opportunity was afforded Sunday at the Reva and David Logan Center for the Arts, where the University of Chicago Presents series offered an afternoon of two-lute music played by Paul O'Dette and Ronn McFarlane.

The risk, of course, in such a concert is that the audience will find the music too homogenous. Any dedicated classical concertgoer can be counted on to appreciate the subtle differences between, say, two fugues by Bach or two sonatas by Beethoven. But between two fantasias by Renaissance lute composers they've probably never heard of? So, even more laudable than O'Dette and McFarlane's mastery of their instruments was the intelligence of their programming, particularly their maximization of variety.

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