Castlemaine Art Gallery
Saturday Nov.15th 2014 7pm
Luigi Boccherini 1743-1805
Cello quintet in C Major Op.28/No.4
Boccherini was an Italian composer who worked in Spain at the royal court. He was a prolific composer, writing over 100 works for string quintet alone. Boccherini was a cellist and the first cello part is virtuosic, often in a higher register than the first violin. There are sounds imitating bird calls, shimmering textures with fast overlapping notes and many trills. Influences of Spanish dances and refined 18th century court life are there, with musical jokes in the fast movements and exquisite pathos in the slow 3rd movement, ‘Grave’. This Quintet in C features the famous Rondo that is often played inan arrangement for cello and piano.
J.S. Bach 1685-1750
Suite for Solo Cello No.5
in C Minor
This suite of movements based on French 18th century court dances is one of six suites by Bach for solo cello that push the boundaries of the form and do not appear to have been performed in Bach’s lifetime. They were studied and performed by Pablo Casals in the 20th century and have since become important solo works for cello and viola players. Fintan Murphy plays this solo suite on viola. Prelude, Allemande, Corrente, Sarabande, Gavottes and Gigue are the six movements.
Johannes Brahms 1833-1897
String Sextet No.1 in Bb Major
This piece for two violins, two viola and two cellos is one of the masterpieces of the Romantic chamber music repertoire. With six voices instead of the usual four Brahms creates rich harmonies and adds even more depth with double stops. Brahms’ music features sophisticated use of syncopation. Melodies and accompaniments occur in different timings so the overall effect is of fluid ever-changing movement. In true Romantic style there is a lush string tone. The melodic invention is extraordinary, with different melodies invoking characters of grandeur and storms, contrasted with charm and lightness.