Finale gave a whiff of ozone; CULTURE review CBSO/Volko Symphony Hall ****.Byline: Norman Stinchcombe
Explaining the philosophical framework of Saed Haddad's new work for piano and orchestra would take longer than the piece itself - all 11 minutes of it.
The Jordanian composer's Alternative World received its British premiere.
It's divided into five interlinked sections with suggestive titles (in French) referring to tombs, shadows, nothingness and, well, you get his drift.
The thundering Idee fixe was a sort Prokofiev-style obsessive scherzo scherzo (skĕr`tsō) [Ital.,=joke], in music, term denoting various types of composition, primarily one that is lively and presents surprises in the rhythmic or melodic material. with soloist Saleem Abboud Ashkar (pictured) matched against a reinforced CBSO percussion section. There were some ear-tickling sounds when, for example, Haddad underpinned subdued piano with muted trumpets, as if the pianist was overhearing jazz being played in another room. Its disjointed nature was part of the work's design but it still seemed like a handful of musical fragments in search of a larger, unwritten, and perhaps more interesting form in which to take refuge.
Ravel's Piano Concerto for the left hand A number of piano concertos have been written for the left hand. The best known of these is the Piano Concerto for the Left Hand in D major by Maurice Ravel, which was written for Paul Wittgenstein. is also short but of much greater musical stature. Unlike his bright G major concerto this one begins in the inky darkness of double-basses and contrabassoon contrabassoon, large, deep-toned instrument of the oboe family, also called double bassoon. Its tube, over 16 ft (5 m) long, is doubled upon itself four times. It was first made by Hans Schreiber of Berlin in 1620. .
Ashkar revealed the poetry of the improvisatory im·prov·i·sa·to·ry also im·prov·i·sa·to·ri·al
1. Made up without preparation; improvised.
2. Of or relating to improvisation: improvisatory skill. slow section and the concerto's underlying menace - the feral grin under its jazzy good-humoured surface. There was a rare, and fine, performance of Paul Dukas's ballet music La Peri, a more erotic and highly-perfumed version of Persian mythology than Schumann's charming but chaste look at the same material. Conductor Ilan Volkov handled the large orchestral with skill and let the fulsome musical exoticism blossom.
Debussy's La Mer was also very good, with some outstanding woodwind playing. I've heard the waves frolic more energetically but the exciting finale gave us a whiff of ozone.