Today we went to a very pleasant afternoon of chamber music, titled From Fugues to Finales. It was organised by the Greytown Music Group as part of the town’s weekend arts festival.
This scratch group, tongue-in-cheek-named The Ultimates, was made up of some of the Wellington region’s top musicians: Vicki Jones (bass), Robert Ibell (cello), Rebecca Steel (flute) and Adam Gordon (piano).
Though not a regular chamber music group, their professionalism showed through. They were very ‘together’ and there were some exciting, tricky ensemble passages.
It was hardly a typical chamber music lineup and the musicians had to write some of their own arrangements.
Composers included Mendelssohn Bach, Chopin, Poulenc, Fourdrain, Soler, and others.
The concert’s rough theme was ‘final’. Every piece was final in some way. For instance, one exquisitely performed piano/cello duo was Chopin’s final composition, orginally played by the composer-pianist in his final public performance.
It was a cheerful, relaxed afternoon; the antithesis of some formal chamber music concerts I’ve been to in the past. (Though to be fair, the chamber music concert atmosphere has lightened up a lot in recent years.)
Finality continued beyond the final work into a light-hearted encore for which song-sheets were handed out. They played, and we sang, Englebert Humperdinck’s 1967 pop hit, The Last Waltz.