The concert given by Ensemble Liaison on Sunday 26 October 2014 was an exceptional musical experience which those present will remember for a very long time. The appreciative crowd was amazed at the display of virtuosity and excellent musicianship that abounded in this truly remarkable concert.
The concert began with a stylish reading of the Beethoven Trio opus 38 reduced to the trio format by the composer himself from his popular Septet opus 20 (for clarinet, bassoon, horn, violin, viola, ‘cello and double bass). Because of this reduction the piano part is extremely challenging, yet Timothy Young handled the complexities of the score with ease and dexterity (interestingly using an iPad instead of sheet music!). The trio exhibited chamber music at its best with beautiful tone quality and sensitive musicianship throughout. The pianist together with David Griffiths, clarinet, and Svetlana Bogosavljevic, ‘cello, faithfully drew out the individual character of each of the six contrasting movements with style and conviction.
After the interval Brahms’ sublime Trio in A minor opus 114 received a memorable and insightful performance which was a joy to experience. This is a great work and Brahms’ intentions were fully realised in this magnificent performance. The first movement set the sombre mood with perfect balance and sense of purpose. The Adagio to follow was pensive and sensitively played while the Minuet and Trio echoed respectively the lilt of a German dance and the bucolic lustiness of the Ländler of the Bavarian mountains where Brahms spent many summer holidays. The final movement was very much up-tempo and had much rhythmic excitement interspersed with charming flowing melodic episodes. This outstanding performance brought the concert to a thrilling climax.
The Concert Fantasy on themes from Gershwin’s Porgy and Bess by Igor Frolov was a display of extreme virtuosity and tender subtle musicianship from clarinettist David Griffiths with equally matching support from his colleagues. In response to the standing ovation the trio obliged with a number of encores, including Monti’s Czardas, leaving the audience on a “high” and a sense of amazement and wonder. This was the South Coast Music Society’s final concert for the year.