Wednesday, December 2, 2009

CIM: Woodwind Ensemble

Poulenc: Sextuor (1932)
Saint-Saens: Caprice on Danish and Russian Airs, Op. 79 (1887)
Nielsen: Kvintett, Op. 43 (1922)
Bruckner: Motet: Virgo Jesse
Lussier: Bassango
Williams: Cantina from Star Wars
Hindemith: Kleine Kammermusik, Op. 24, No. 2 (1922)
Barber: Summer Music, Op. 31
Mozart: C Minor Serenade, K. 388

I realized about half way through the program that the past few performances I've attended have essentially isolated the constituent parts of an orchestra -- strings, percussion, woodwinds -- and that's actually rather intriguing to me. It is interesting to hear, for example, just an oboe, clarinet, bassoon, and flute without the "distraction" of the other instruments -- I think I can now identify the sound of the bassoon with some level of certainty.

As can be seen from the list above the program covered a huge range of composers and periods; unfortunately none of the pieces in the program particularly captured my fancy -- Williams's Cantina was fun. One of the biggest problems, I think, was the flow between the 3rd, 4th, and 5th pieces -- a shorter break than some of the pauses between movements in other pieces and no clear indication that the end of a piece had been reached--based on the lack of applause, I don't think I was the only one who didn't realize that we had moved to a new piece, and it wasn't until the contrabassoon came out for Cantina that I realized I had heard 3 pieces instead of one.


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