REVIEW / CONCERT
SOMETHING OLD, SOMETHING NEW
Victoria Concert Hall
Singapore’s premier chamber ensemble re:Sound has been usually working with the land’s prime soloists and leaders by means of its previous two seasons.
Violinist Kam Ning and pianist Melvyn Tan have featured centre stage in previous live shows and its newest gig noticed a visitor look by younger award-winning violinist Ike See (locals know him as See Ian Ike), now a member of the august Australian Chamber Orchestra.
The concert’s first half featured solely strings, opening with the stirring strains of Grieg’s Holberg Suite. This perennial favorite took on a silver sheen within the driving velocity of its Prelude, with a full and wealthy sonority coming by means of with immediacy.
Modelled on baroque dances, a lot care was taken to form every of its 5 actions, such that they sounded larger than the sum of their components. In the stately Air, cellos sang mellifluously over a rocking accompaniment whereas the ultimate Rigaudon bristled with invigorating power.
See turned soloist for Prokofiev’s Five Melodies Op. 35b, initially conceived for wordless soprano voice, in a refined but efficient association by American violinist-conductor Joseph Swensen.
See’s violin was properly supported by the ensemble, musing in bittersweet contemplations whereas hovering above the throng in heady climaxes. This was not a showy suite, however one illuminated by a real and heartfelt musicianship.
It wouldn’t do for the primary half to finish quietly. Thus Bartok’s Romanian Folk Dances fulfilled the position of crowd-pleaser, with See main the crew in a rowdy romp like a gypsy band excessive on spirits – the imbibable type, in fact.
Modern performances of Mozart’s Symphony No. 41 In C Major (Ok.551), often known as the Jupiter, are historically led by a conductor from the rostrum. See did what 18th-century musicians did by main the orchestra from his violin. Trading baton for bow, he was an animated presence who moved, swayed, waved and rocked with every phrase and measure.
The outcomes have been little wanting spectacular. Even the opening bars of the primary motion have been “in your face”, unafraid of asserting itself and certified by vigorous thumps from Michael Tan’s timpani. This was not a efficiency that allowed for coasting by means of as each musical response and counter-response had one thing vital and very important to say.
After an nearly exhausting opening motion, the following sluggish second motion was to be no conventional Romanze both. Although sharply positioned accents piqued the ears, there was grace throughout, residing as much as the genteel spirit of the Rococo. The third motion’s Minuet and Trio traipsed evenly and buoyantly, distinguished by very wonderful woodwind taking part in.
The tour de pressure of contrapuntal writing that was the finale had the texture of an excellent homecoming. Tricky fugal writing was surmounted with not simply finely honed facility, however with the delight of possession.
Tautly held collectively from begin to finish, this was a efficiency of Mozart’s closing symphony that one longed for right here and hitherto thought unattainable. That is till now.