Early Music Montreal

Saturday, June 25, 2005

8:00 Twelve Seasons

Twelve Seasons - Cage, Vivaldi and Piazolla
I came prepared to dislike the John Cage movements, but was pleasantly surprised. Though it was not the high point of the evening for me, it was more melodic than I expected. I truly loved the Vivaldi and Piazolla. Matthias Maute did a masterful job of arranging the music for this grouping. It made me hear the Four Seasons of Vivaldi with new ears.

The Allegro of Spring was delicate with a lovely continuo line. Matthias plays with breathtaking virtuosity. He sometimes bends the notes and accentuates the dissonances. Then he gallops through the allegro movements at an impossible speed, never losing clarity. The whole ensemble was excellent. In Winter there was a beautiful harpsichord solo. The rich sound of the bass added a richness to the sound.

For me, the highlight of the evening was the Piazolla. Even the body language of the musicians changed as they played his music. The lush sounds and seductive rhythms filled the church. Though not composed for these instruments the effect was wonderful. Even the harpsichord fit right into the soundscape. The music, at times languid, especially in some of the beautiful cello solos, spoke to the soul. In one section, the undulation moved from musician to musician - bassoon to oboe to recorder.

It was interesting to hear the contrast of the 3 composers. Altogether - yet another wonderful concert.