Church Concert Explores Various Loves, 9/24/12
...the concert put on by the historical performance group Natur on a warm Sunday afternoon at the Unitarian Universalist Church abounded in small pleasures, perfect little moments and quiet delights.
...The performers were remarkably accomplished. Fedoruk, a familiar figure on the Southern California concert scene, in addition to possessing a lovely clear soprano, also played the viola da gamba. The other pure soprano, Hall, played a little harpsichord.
Bailey, a perky presence, sings and plays recorder. And Helley, whose somewhat plummy mezzo stood out from the rest, assisted on finger cymbals. Fedoruk and Helley were invariably the more expressive in their contributions, while Bailey and especially Hall were cooler customers.
The star of the show was Haas, a virtuoso on recorder, whose performance of some anonymous and difficult variations for that instrument was dazzling. He also accompanied the singers on a boxy thing that could either be a harpsichord or an organ.
It was an intelligently put-together program, with more variety than you might think, and sung in five languages...
Jim Ruggirello, Gazettes.com
Paul Gibson, 2012
"In their voyage through heavenly, courtly, and earthly loves, the women of Natur displayed voices that ranged from rich and golden to pure and silvery, blending and intertwining with each other in delightful expressivity. In Stephan Haas, they not only have an outstanding keyboardist (harpsichord, organ), but also a world-class virtuoso on recorder. It was an enchanting performance. Long may they flourish!"
Paul Gibson, Los Angeles based composer
Jeanne McDougall, 2012
“An amazingly pure and thrilling experience of all things early music! Vocally and instrumentally, Natur helped the audience leave the temporal behind, transporting us through vocal and instrumental alchemy to a better place. Highly recommended!”
Jeanne McDougall, Ph.D. candidate in History at the University of Southern California, Los Angeles
Churches Show Varied Musical Palette, 9/29/10
We don’t get too many historical performance (what we used to call early music) groups around here. Choruses sing Bach and occasionally Palestrina, but the repertoire also includes some fascinating instrumental selections (not to mention instruments) and a legion of composers from the Baroque and Renaissance.
...Haas opened with a complex improvisation on harpsichord, and during the concert contributed some technically impressive work on recorder. He also improvised on the gemshorn, which looks like a shofar with holes, except he blows in the wrong end and it sounds more flute-like than anything else.
Hall has the darker, warmer voice, Bailey the perkier personality. The two also play recorder; after they had each sung a solo accompanied by Haas, the three tootled merrily on a little piece by Michael Praetorius. Later in the program, the two voices combined beautifully on two a cappella duets by Morley...
It was a hot afternoon, but Natur’s little church concert of varied, entertaining and consistently interesting music was very cool.
Jim Ruggirello, Gazettes.com
Early music group bows in Seal Beach, 5/31/09
An early music group christening itself Natur made its debut Saturday afternoon at the little quasi-Tudor First United Methodist Church in Seal Beach. The concert proved a modest beginning, but the musicians have plans to continue, and it is to be hoped that they can.
Timothy Mangan, The Orange County Register