Melinda Coffey Armstead
|Melinda Coffey Armstead, pianist, has performed as recitalist and chamber musician in the United States, Canada, England, France and Israel. Denis Matthews, BBC music critic, wrote of her "...exquisite pianism devoted entirely to the music itself". She has recorded over sixty recitals for the CBC, and on CD for Waterlily Records. Toronto, and Meridian Records, London. She has recorded a CD of solo piano pieces entitled "Season of Dreams"(1998), of which Coast Weekly music critic Scott MacClelland wrote: "Gorgeous new CD... Coffey's playing is superbly suited to this program." Her latest release is a brand new CD of romantic showpieces entitled "Beyond Words "(1999).
Well-known to audiences on the central coast and northern California, she lives in Carmel and is Music Director of Church in the Forest, Pebble Beach. Recent Review:
"...Melinda Coffey Armstead, who serves as the music director of the Church in the Forest, is a treasure. That this critically acclaimed keyboard artist makes our community her home and offers her considerable talents so generously counts as one of our regionís musical blessings. Coffeyís superb pianism and ability to seem graciously at home in a wide variety of performing circumstances has earned her a reputation as both a stellar accompanist and enchanting soloist." The Monterey County Herald, January 16, 1999
|— MUSIC AT CHURCH IN THE FOREST —|
|As Music Director of Church in the Forest, my job (and my delight) is to program and perform in about 52 "mini-concerts" annually. The resources available include a beautiful baroque-style pipe organ, a Steinway 7' grand piano, a Korg synthesizer, a budget to hire professional instrumentalists and vocalists, and the freedom to choose the best available. A congregation that loves and actively supports great music makes this possible. There is no resident volunteer choir, so none of its members warble or sing flat or fail to show up when you really need them. We perform extensive classical repertoire, but we also occasionally include popular styles, Dixieland, jazz, Celtic and folk. Although we have not yet done rap or rock music, that day may be coming, but over my dead body. It boggles my mind they pay me to have such fun. They also let me write a weekly column, The Music Box, in the church bulletin into which I empty my thoughts, sensible or otherwise. Often these are very informative musicologically, but when the facts are dull I make up better ones, going well beyond informative.|