Monday, December 4

Close Up Concert: Elegy – Royal Liverpool Philharmonic Orchestra

This delightful and varied evening of short classical pieces featured three outstanding players from the Royal Liverpool Philharmonic Orchestra – Cormac Henry on flute, Catherine Marwood on viola and Elizabeth McNulty on harp.

I have to say that the combination of all three instruments produced the most exquisitely magical sound, and indeed all three musicians gave stellar performances throughout the evening.

The concert featured Jean-Phillippe Rameau’s beautiful baroque piece Pieces de Clavecin (1706), it is such a dazzling and extravagant piece of work and one of the finest examples of early baroque music. Rameau is still regarded as one of France’s most important and influential composers and listening to this piece, you can easily understand why – it is a truly superb composition and has definately whetted my appetite to listen to more of his work.

Theodore Dubois’s Terettino for flute, viola, and harp (1905) positively soars with its beautifully melodic and simple style – it really is an uncomplicated and refreshingly romantic composition and each musician shone throughout the performance of this classic.

Toru Takemitsu’s And Then I Knew Twas Wind (1992) is a bold contemporary piece which has an extremely interesting if somewhat fragmented melodic structure to it. Compared to the other compositions included in tonight’s programme it certainly was the most challenging and perplexing piece of all.

Tonight’s concert also included Arnold Bax’s ElegiacTrio for flute, viola, and harp (1916) a lilting and often haunting piece from this often-underrated English composer. Bax’s composition stays in the memory for a long time afterwards – it is a uniquely beautiful piece of music, and it was performed to utter perfection at tonight’s concert.

Andre Jolivet’s remarkable Petite Suite for flute, viola, and harp (1941) completed tonight’s programme. Jolivet’s intricate composition is both elegant and joyful in turn and there are certain passages in this suite which are profoundly moving and deeply thoughtful – I am glad that Jolivet’s piece was included in tonight’s concert.

Elegy was a real treat. An evening of great diversity, colour and melody performed by musicians at the top of their game.

Reviewer: Kiefer Williams

Reviewed: 13th November 2023

North West End UK Rating:

Rating: 5 out of 5.