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Albuquerque cellists honor late Oak Park native Felix Wurman

November 2nd, 2014 12:00 AM

See the cellists perform "Hallelujah" by Leonard Cohen here. In keeping with early performances of Chatter's predecessor, The Church of Beethoven, audience members were invited to sing along.

Felix Wurman

By Jean Lotus

Forest Park Review Editor

A  gaggle of Albuquerque cellists celebrated the life and work of Oak Park native Felix Wurman (1958-2009) founder of the Church of Beethoven Oct. 26 at the Sunday Chatter concert series in Albuquerque.

The performance, in honor of Wurman's birthday, gathered a group of cellists on stage at the Kosmos, an arts space started by Wurman before his death in 2009. The Kosmos is now run by a board of directors including Pamela Michaelis and David Crum.

Violinist David Feldman, artistic director of the Kosmos and a close friend of Wurman, wrote transcriptions for cello of the pieces. Poet Richard Vargas, whose poems have been featured on Prairie Home Companion radio show, read.

Wurman grew up in a musical Oak Park family, the son of European immigrants Hans and Brenda Wurman. He debuted at the Chicago Symphony Orchestra on cello in his teens. His quartet — named "Domus" after the portable geodesic dome under which they played—  won a Gramophone Award (the British "Grammy") in 1980 for best Chamber Music Recording.

Wurman founded Church of Beethoven in a repurposed gas station on Route 66 in Albuquerque. The group moved to the Kosmos Arts Space in 2009.