Tragedy Inspires Elias Duo Performance

by Madeleine Mosher

Before Thursday, violinist Carlos Elias and his wife, pianist Andrea Arese-Elia, hadn’t performed together in over six months. 

Since last December, they’ve been grieving their friend and fellow musician, Andra Lunde Padrichelli, who passed away due to cancer that month. 

The Eliases’ dedicated their returning concert to her. 

Professor Carlos Elias plays the violin, while his wife, Andrea Arese-Elias, accompanies him on the piano. Photo by Carrie Bergan.

Elias and Padrichelli were both professors at Cedarville. Elias teaches violin, and Padrichelli taught cello. The Eliases moved to Ohio about seven years ago, and around two years later asked Padrichelli to add her cello to their duo.

“It was kind of chemistry right away,” Elias said, “It was so easy to play with her.” 

The three of them formed the Las Americas Trio. 

“Las Americas” means “the Americas,”all three of which were represented in the group. Elias is Salvadoran (Central America), Arese-Elias is Argentinian (South America), and Padrichelli was American (North America).

On Thursday, there were only two performers on the Recital Hall Stage in the Dixon Ministry Center.

But the pieces they chose created a ghost cello and cellist there with them. 

They played Manuel de Falla’s Suite Popular Espagnole, Gabriel Fauré’s Après un rêve (After a Dream), and César Franck’s Violin Sonata. Each of these, as audience members familiar with the music would have recognized, has also often been performed with a cello instead instead of a violin. 

At the recital, the Eliases remembered not only Padrichelli’s music skill — she was the principal cello for the Dayton Philharmonic Orchestra — but her fighting spirit as well. 

They said she never spoke about her cancer, and always said she was doing fine. 

“You could see that she didn’t feel too well,” Arese-Elias said, “but she wanted to play the concerts anyway.” 

The Trio’s final concert was November 16, 2018, exactly one month before Padrichelli passed away.

The Elias remembered Padrichelli’s husband had to carry her cello for her because she was too weak. She needed time to rest, cough and catch her breath between movements. 

“Still she wanted to play,” Arese-Elias said.

Madeleine Mosher is a junior journalism major and an Arts & Entertainment co-editor for Cedars. When she’s not watching Amazon Prime, she’s probably at the gym, asking if anyone has food, or falling asleep.

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