What is it like to have two musical minds under one roof?
While one might expect strong competition, Cecilia and Richard Belcher complement each other wonderfully, and relish performances they play together.
We caught up with spouses, who are the talented cellist and violinist in our upcoming Unchambered: Fantasy, Love and Sex(tet) performance on Oct. 9 at MATCH – Midtown Arts and Theater Center Houston. The program comprises Robert Schumann’s Fantasy Pieces Op. 73 for Cello and Piano, Erwin Schulhoff’s Duo for Violin and Cello, and Ernõ Dohnányi’s Sextet for Clarinet, Horn, Piano, Violin, Viola and Cello.
Q: What do you like the most about each other’s playing? (Both)
Richard Belcher: I love the range of sound that Cecilia makes – she is constantly creating the most amazing colors, and that’s inspiring to play with. She also is so innately musical – kind of like her personality: very natural, warm and expressive.
Cecilia Belcher: I also think Richard’s thoughtful and genuine personality comes through in his playing. His beautiful sound is supportive and a joy to fit in to. I’m always impressed and inspired by his musical awareness, great sense of rhythm, and his ability to think outside himself while performing.
Q: What is it like being married to someone who does pretty much the exact same thing as you? What are the challenges?
Richard Belcher: It’s a gift to be able to share our lives together – being married to a musician means it’s easy to understand when we need our time to practice, and we know that the hours will be odd! One other benefit that is also challenging is knowing how to give each other space. While we’re able to help each other easily, we don’t want to feel like we’re always having a lesson while we practice!
Cecilia Belcher: I feel very lucky to be married to such an incredible musician (and person). Whether it be traveling around the world to hear his Enso Quartet concerts, or listening to the quartet rehearse at home, I feel so grateful to have his music in my life. We both support each other to achieve our dreams, and I don’t think I’d be where I am without him. However, both of our successes make it a challenge to be in the same place and the same time.
Q: Do you have a work of music that’s very meaningful to both of you?
Cecilia Belcher: We’re playing the Brahms Double concerto together later this season in Minnesota. We’re both looking forward to that!
Q: About the Erwin Schulhoff Duo for Violin and Cello: Does your collaborative style in music match your collaborative style in your personal relationship? Who’s the boss?
Richard Belcher: Yes – we’re able to pick up (hopefully) good things from each other in both aspects of our life. And as we grow I think we can recognize each other’s strengths more, and where we can get help from one another. The boss? Depends on the day and what needs to be done!!
Do you share concerts often?
Richard Belcher: Never enough…I can’t wait for more!
These two seem to have it all figured out—leading a harmonious lifestyle both on and off the stage. Such wonderful balance can be heard through their beautiful music.
ROCO presents Unchambered: Fantasy, Love and Sex(tet) on Sunday, Oct. 9, at MATCH – Midtown Arts & Theater Center Houston ($15-$25)