It is not quite clear who composed the aphorism “Writing about music is like dancing about architecture” but the idea is obvious enough: nothing communicates quite like music.
But here, in Felix Klieser’s Artist-in-Residence Recital, at Lighthouse, Poole, on Wednesday the brilliant German hornist and new friends from the BSO, with pianist Danny Driver, got into some serious and civilised conversations which just happened to be orchestrated by Mozart and Brahms.
Themes were exchanged like jokes and anecdotes in a fireside natter. Statements were pronounced to provoke responses or to conclude debates. Everyone spoke at once to try to claim a point – or to join in cheerful unison.
It is not so often the BSO season concerts turn to chamber-scale performances. Here, though, the players seemed to revel in the opportunity to combine together in this intimate, sociable activity to delight a very enthusiastic audience.
Mozart’s Quintet for Piano and Winds K.452 opened proceedings with its gorgeous interplays of ideas, and pretty, joyful sounds. It was great to see Edward Kay (oboe), Barry Deacon (clarinet) and Tammy Thorn (bassoon) stepping out of their usual orchestra roles and into this work.
Featuring Mark Derudder on violin, Tom Beer and Miguel Rodriguez on violas and Jesper Svedberg on cello, Mozart’s Horn Quintet K.407 was decorated with lovely horn colours, notably in the melting middle movement, but also in the dashing conclusion.
After the interval, the Brahms Horn Trio Op 40, probably composed as a memorial for the composer’s mother, brought Felix Klieser back on stage with Danny Driver and Mark Derudder. Now we entered a different sound world, especially in the slow movement, which sounded like a rich description of the sun setting over Poole Harbour. The performance concluded on a high, finishing with an exciting and lively “Con brio” full of dash and drive. The audience would not let the evening end without an encore of the Scherzo of the Brahms.
It was inspiring to hear more of Mr Klieser, and to catch him in music where his individual style is so evident. This must have been a punishing concert for the player’s lip, but the musical dialogue made a joyful evening at the BSO. The discussions on stage were matched by the animated chatter of a happy audience as we filed out of this unforgettable Artist-in-Residence recital.