September 2017 concert

The first concert of this season is coming up on September 11th.

The programme is available here.

Andrew Lewandowski and David Smith will start off the evening with Heinrich Bärmann’s Adagio in D flat major for Clarinet and Piano. Heinrich Joseph Bärmann (1784 – 1847) was a German clarinet virtuoso of the Romantic era who is generally considered as being not only an outstanding performer of his time, but highly influential in the creation of several important composers’ works for his instrument, e.g. those of Weber as below. His style was near enough to that of Wagner for some of his work to be misattributed.

Next we will have another duo. Duo Diapason is Stuart McGowan, Mandolin, and John Maw, Mandola. I have copied here their own programme note.

“There are four pieces in our programme for today. The first is by Giovanni Battista Gervasio, (1725-1785) and is his Sonata a Mandolino e Basso. The piece is in two movements, both marked Allegro. The transcription is by Stuart, from the scanned copy in the Petrucci music library. Being a handwritten original has meant that some thought had to be given to the exact notation – it is not uncommon to find significant copyist’s errors or faults with the original image. The development sections did contain some interesting use of accidentals – hopefully these have been satisfactorily resolved.

We follow that with the Sonata a due Violini soli by Johann Vierdanck (1605-1646). What is increasingly obvious is that throughout musical history the Mandolin has been a worthy counterpart for the violin, and was often notated as an alternative instrumentation for pieces, and so we have “borrowed” this piece which we feel works particularly well for plucked strings.

Its character is very much that of a “conversation” which is why our next piece is called ‘Conversation’ (subtitled “between the mandolin and viola”) by the late Eileen Pakenham (1914-2009). She was a leading light in the London Mandolin Ensemble (where John and I met) between 1978 and 1983.

We finish with Duetto IV by Antoine Riggieri, for 2 Mandolins. Riggieri is known to have been working and teaching in Paris in the 1780’s, and clearly possessed fine composing and performing skills, although we have little other information about him. The term Style Galante neatly describes this little duet.”

Finally, Andrew Lewandowski and David Smith will play the piano version of Weber’s Clarinet Concertino in E flat Opus 26. Carl Maria von Weber was a multi-talented pianist, composer and conductor. His works for clarinet, horn and bassoon remain in the repertoire, and his orchestrations were much admired by contemporaries such as Mendelssohn and Berlioz. He wrote his Concertino for Clarinet in E♭ Major, Op. 26 J.109 for clarinettist Heinrich Bärmann in three days between March 29 and April 3 of 1811; Bärmann learned the work over the next three days; and the command performance, for which King Maximilian I of Bavaria purchased 50 tickets, took place on the evening of April 5. It is a one-movement work in variation form.

The October concert will be on Monday 9th and is organised by Li Lin Teo. Please let her know if you plan to offer anything.

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