Thursday, November 06, 2008

Brilliant Friends

Congratulations to Bart Feller, who last night played C. P. E. Bach's D-Minor Flute Concerto with the Orchestra of St. Luke's. He played with a shimmering tone, assured rhythmic poise, and infallible sense of line. The first movement is written in long paragraphs for the flute. Bart suavely led the audience through these, illuminating the music's intricate rhetoric with charm. In the lyrical second movement, he deftly scaled the emotional arch drawing us toward the touching cadenza. The finale is all fire and drama. Bart chewed up the scenery, ripping through the virtuoso passages with brilliant flourish and power.

Music from this period is fascinating and is enjoying something of a revival. Long written off as transitional, it only sounds that way if you listen with Mozart and Haydn in your ear. Knowing what comes next in music history can make music of the mid-18th century sound as if it is searching for something it can't quite find. In last night's performance, surrounded by the music of JS Bach and Handel, CPE sounded like the adventurer he was.

What a thrill to hear your friends do such fine work!

No comments: