Australian Chamber Orchestra
Metropolis Recital Corridor, September 20
For this program, the Australian Chamber Orchestra emphasised the chamber reasonably than the orchestra, slicing its forces down to 5 gamers – solely 4 appeared in anybody work – and welcoming visitor pianist and composer Olli Mustonen.
His personal Piano Quintet (piano plus string quartet) is written in a daring neo-Romantic model mixing traditional varieties, romantic gestures with Twentieth-century modernist harmonies and emotional extremities.
Of the three works on this system, it was the one greatest suited to the magnified scale and projection of Mustonen’s efficiency model as a pianist, amplifying the textures, shapes and expressive tropes of Nineteenth-century European chamber music like a dramatic panorama the place outlines have been bolded, colors reworked and small textural particulars augmented to be reborn with new fierceness or radiance.
Mustonen describes the primary motion as crammed with drama and keenness, though it was drama of a very spiky and menacing tone. After an electrical opening flourish, it settled right into a hammered march on the piano which subsided solely reluctantly, quietened however unbowed.
The motion developed a variety of aggressively drawn textures – grinding jabs from the decrease strings, clamorous frenetic strokes excessive up, relieved sometimes by brooding sultry moments within the decrease register. The second motion began quieter with a touch of the sardonic within the recurring, exactly positioned pair of repeated notes at every cadence.
It rose to a climax of galvanised momentum from strings with the primary theme ringing vividly on the piano. The final motion began with a pristine chorale, earlier than the unstoppable momentum returned, constructing demonically to a wild shut.
The live performance started with an association for a similar devices of Darius Milhaud’s ballet rating, La Creation Du Monde, mixing neoclassical and jazz idiom. Impressed by a go to to Harlem in 1921, the work units an arcadian pastoral scene earlier than a sharp-edged jazz fugue.