A
 
Web www.artsmart.co.za
A R T S M A R T
arts news from kwazulu-natal

music
www.artsmart.co.za
enquiries@artsmart.co.za
 A current news
crafts - dance - drama - film & tv - literature
music - supper theatre - visual arts
miscellaneous news - festivals
letters to the editor
home page
archives A
crafts - dance - drama - film & tv - literature
music - supper theatre - visual arts
miscellaneous news - festivals
 

NB: as of 23 September 2008, all new artSMart articles are being published on the site news.artsmart.co.za.

FRIENDS OF MUSIC: OPUS 3 TRIO (article first published : 2005-11-9)

At the start of this Friends of Music concert at the Durban Jewish Centre, the main spokesman for the players, Marc Botha, said that Opus 3 Trio was a unique combination, unique, as far as he knew, in the world. He may well be right. I have never heard of a trio consisting of saxophone, guitar and cello. So the concert was a novel experience, and an enjoyable one.

The players come from Pretoria. Predictably enough, their programme consisted entirely of arrangements, with the exception of a couple of local original compositions. Generally speaking, the dominant role was assumed by the saxophone, and from the first notes of the evening - by Vivaldi, of all people - it was clear that the saxophonist, Marc Botha, is a first-rate player: Skilful, clear, confident. Charl Lamprecht is the guitarist of the group. He uses an amplifier, which is wise; without it the delicate sound of his instrument would be drowned by the others. The cellist is Toni Ivanova, who comes from Bulgaria and now plays in several South African orchestras. She is technically outstanding and produces a lovely warm tone. Indeed all three players are obviously dedicated and accomplished musicians.

Their programme covered nearly three centuries, from a Vivaldi concerto for lute and strings to works by the Argentinian king of the tango Astor Piazzolla and by Joaquin Rodrigo, the latter represented by the Adagio from his well-known Concierto de Aranjuez.

The Vivaldi came off very well, bright, optimistic music that I suppose could be arranged for almost anything.

Toni Ivanova contributed an eloquent cello solo by Bach which well demonstrated her capabilities. Then came a Schubert group, including Ave Maria, with the cellist again prominent, and the F minor Musical Moment, a rather quaint and humorous version of a very familiar tune. The famous Serenade (Standchen, malodorously described in the programme as Stenchen) was a less successful arrangement.

Incidentally, the guitarist, Charl Lamprecht, mentioned that Schubert himself was a guitar player. In fact the great composer sometimes played the guitar in bed, accompanying himself singing his own peerless songs. Other people who played the guitar included Berlioz, Paganini and Weber.

Guitarist Charl Lamprecht played a major role in two works by the South African composer Chris Lamprecht, both very attractive. The first was a little set of variations on Greensleeves in which the players, to quote Marc Botha again, “jazz it up a bit”. This provided some of the best moments of the evening.

The second was a three-movement suite intriguingly entitled Sarah in Disguise. This turned out to be an entertaining development of the well-known Afrikaans song Sarie Marais, with a nice little bit of counterpoint between saxophone and cello in the slow movement and a touch of the baroque in the final Allegro. I was mildly surprised that the composer did not exploit the obvious resemblance of Sarie Marais to La ci darem la mano from Mozart’s Don Giovanni.

The evening’s Prelude Performer, funded by the National Lottery, was yet another gifted young violinist of oriental origins, ten-year-old Yea Kyung Kim from Durban Girls’ College. Playing Corelli and Gounod, she showed great promise for one so young. - Michael Green




 A current news
crafts - dance - drama - film & tv - literature
music - supper theatre - visual arts
miscellaneous news - festivals
letters to the editor
home page
archives A
crafts - dance - drama - film & tv - literature
music - supper theatre - visual arts
miscellaneous news - festivals
a co-production by caroline smart services and .durbanet. site credits
copyright © subsists in this page. all rights reserved. [ edit ] copyright details  artsmart