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The Town Concert was the scene of the Kelly Wind Quintet recital, which in addition to the Françaix Wind Quintet, also featured a work by Mozart, originally written for a clock organ, and a fairly recent piece by Paul Patterson, Comedy for Five Winds, Op 14. The Adagio and Allegro K594 of Mozart was very well-done, showing off each instrument as intended.

The Patterson work was entirely charming. It's also of a show-off nature, but more deliberately so, with a good bit of humor mixed in. There's a bit of blues, lots of bent notes, a game of musical tag, and a well-known hornpipe thrown in for good measure. Jean Françaix wrote his Wind Quintet for friends in an orchestra, and it has become his best-known work. Hooray for the 'Kellys' for bringing it out of hiding. It's a very melodious work, with modern but not dissonant modulations, and is truly fun to listen to.

The afternoon concert at Bantry House featured cellist David Cohen and pianist Pollen Leschenko in the cello sonatas by Mendelssohn (No 2 in D major, Op 58) and Grieg (Op 36). There were times when the piano overpowered the cello in both works, although there were many quotes from Grieg's piano concerto in his sonata. As an encore, they gave us a variation by Paganini, noted for its lightness of touch and beautiful tone from both instruments. Mr Cohen also provided humorous comments about the origination of the piece.

The evening concert opened with another unbalanced sonata -- this one by Fauré -- his Sonata for Violin No 2 in E minor, Op 108. Isabelle Faust was the violinist and Alexander Melnikov the pianist. This time I was in the library proper, and while I could readily observe Ms Faust bowing (so I knew she was playing) her sound did not carry over that of the piano, which had the lid full up. (The woman sitting next to me observed that as the two musicians did not look at or smile at each other, perhaps they'd had a row.) I have no idea about that, but it is distressing not to hear the soloist, I do know that.

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Copyright © 8 July 2007 Kelly Ferjutz, Bantry, Ireland


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