HLM Cover Feature: Guitarist Charles Mokotoff

12 01 2010

The January/February 2010 issue of Hearing Loss Magazine, published bimonthly by the Hearing Loss Association of America (HLAA), is in the mail to members this week. Classical guitarist Charles Mokotoff is our cover feature.

The original cover I had done earlier just wasn’t doing it for me…so I went through all the photos I’ve shot of Charles since March to see if any of them really popped. This one was originally shot horizontally, so I tilted it in Photoshop and filled in the gaps with the background to form this vertical cover image. Now this is a cover! I love the movement blur on his hand at the neck of the guitar. Purely unintentional—downright serendipitous! Bonus: You can even see his hearing aid—always a plus for a magazine focused on hearing loss.

I shot this issue’s cover when he played for the HLAA staff this past spring. I first profiled Charles on my blog in November here. I did some outdoor shots for the interior pages in mid-November, then went to hear him play and photograph him at a recital for the Friday Morning Music Club in the Old Town Hall in Fairfax, Virginia on November 19. Read that posting here. And finally, Charles was our well-received live entertainment at our first-ever Tapas Party on November 14. You can read about that party and see photos of the soiree in my posting here.

To learn more about Charles, visit his website here. Listen to sound clips here. You can order his CD, Autumn Elegy, from CD Baby or itunes.com.

Charles will be performing at two venues in March:
Central United Methodist Church
at 4201 Fairfax Drive in Arlington, Virginia on Friday, March 5 at 7:30 p.m. He will perform a recital of solo guitar works by Scarlatti, Albeniz, Boccherini, Rak, Mozart and others, and will be accompanied by Barbara Cackler on piano. For more information, call 703.527.8844. (Free, goodwill offering accepted)

On Saturday, March 20, at 8:00 p.m., he will perform at the St. Albans Episcopal Church, 3001 Wisconsin Avenue, N.W., in Washington, D.C. He will perform a recital of solo guitar works by Scarlatti, Albeniz, Boccherini, Rak, Mozart and others, with accompaniment by Sonya Sutton on the harpsichord. For more information, call 202.363.8286 or e-mail ericg@st-albans-parish.org. (Free, goodwill offering accepted).

You can download and read the article by clicking here: Charles Mokotoff HLM Feature





Portrait: Charles Mokotoff

19 11 2009

I popped over to the Old Town Hall in Fairfax to photograph Charles at a recital this morning. He was part of the Friday Morning Music Club concert series. All FMMC concerts are free and performed as a public service. The Old Town Hall is a lovely place to photograph with its hardwood floors and original old windows with beautiful natural light. I got a few more images to use in the feature layout of the upcoming January/February 2010 issue of Hearing Loss Magazine.

This morning’s FMMC hour-long program consisted of:

Berbiguier: Trio For Flutes, Op. 51, No. 1 (Mvmts. i-iii); Albéniz (arr. Bill Holcombe): Tango from España (performed by Yvonne Kocur, Lauren Sileo, and Holly Vesilind—flute trio). You can listen to Yvonne Kocur’s graduate flute recital at George Mason University here. Listen to Lauren Sileo in a recording with pianist Bryan Wagorn here.

Albéniz: Selected solos, Charles Mokotoff, guitar. You can hear snippets of Charles’ music on his website here.

Haydn: On Mighty Pens, from The Creation; Bach: Wir eilen mit schwachen, doch emsigen Schritten, from Cantata No. 78 (Nancy MacArthur Smith, soprano; Carolee Gans Pastorius, mezzo soprano (guest); Patricia Parker, piano)

Sondheim: One More Kiss; Porter: So in Love; Weill: What Good Would the Moon Be?; and Rossini: Una voce poco fa (Il Barbiere di Siviglia), Stacie Steinke, soprano. Steinke is the Artistic Director for Make-A-Scene Music and Entertainment.


© Cindy Dyer. All rights reserved.






Tapas Potluck ’09 with live entertainment!

19 11 2009

This past Saturday Michael and I hosted our first Tapas Party ever—and our first party with live entertainment as well! Charles Mokotoff, an IT specialist by day and gifted classical guitarist by night, played for our guests after the buffet-style potluck dinner. It was a “playing for portraits” arrangement. Charles will be our cover feature for the January/February 2010 issue of Hearing Loss Magazine, published bimonthly by the Hearing Loss Association of America.

After the intimate concert, my friend Ken asked me, “how in the world are you going to top this event?” I must say, having live entertainment sure kicked things up a notch! We managed to squeeze 37 guests (including Michael and me) into our townhouse—and no one seemed too uncomfortable. I think that’s our maximum capacity, though.

Thanks to everyone for bringing delicious appetizers and desserts (and those wonderful wedding gifts, too—thank you notes to come shortly!) and for helping us to continue to celebrate our October 24 wedding! Special thanks to our out-of-town guests, too: Carmen from Greer, South Carolina; Martha from Roanoke, Texas; and Cammie from Sarasota, Florida—it was such a treat to have you three join us. I hope we didn’t disappoint!

Remember—the Annual Chocoholic Party is in February (this will be our 5th)! Hmmm…near Valentine’s Day…what kind of live entertainment will we have for that soiree? Maybe Rod Stewart singing love songs live? Or Harry Connick, Jr. (oops, need a piano for that one). My first choice would be James Taylor. Surely he needs new head shots?

© Cindy Dyer. All rights reserved.





Latest portraits: classical guitarist Charles Mokotoff

9 11 2009

Charles LeavesCharles Mokotoff is our next cover feature for the Hearing Loss Magazine. An IT specialist with NIH by day, he’s also a classical guitarist. Michael and I met him at the Hearing Loss Association of America headquarters in March. He performed for the HLAA staff and I did some studio shots for his upcoming feature article. He came by my studio earlier this week so we could get some additional images for the upcoming January/February 2010 issue. In exchange for these additional photos, he’s going to perform at our Tapas Potluck Party this coming weekend and we’re excited that we’re going to have live music! I also shot the photos on his website here. You can hear sample soundbites here.

I told my sister Debbie that if this works out well, I’m going to barter musical services from other artists for future parties. I’m thinking that, in exchange for some wonderful new head shots by me, Josh Groban can come sing something Italian for our annual Pesto Fest. As accordian-playing (and bizarre) comedian Judy Tenuta sarcastically says, “yeah, that could happen!”

Insert useless information here: During our Vegas-to-Kodachrome Basin-Bryce-Moab vacation many years ago, my cousin Bill and I were at a casino in Las Vegas. While we were waiting in line at a hotel restaurant, Judy Tenuta walked down a ramp right past us. I had only caught her act just a few times on tv, but I knew who she was immediately—the result of a photographic memory, I guess.

Hey Josh—have your people call my people!

© Cindy Dyer. All rights reserved.