Chamber Philharmonia Cologne entertained a very healthily large audience at Llandaff Cathedral with a mixed programme that not only showed off their distinctive ensemble playing but enabled each to display solo flair.
The programme started with the obligatory Vivaldi but here the La tempesta di mare concerto with soloist Sergey Didorenko, the ensemble’s concert master. This Baroque introduction to the evening quickly displayed the chemistry between players as they interacted both musically and visually with one another.
Double bass player Peter Langisch proved a delightful MC for the evening, not only giving insights into the choice of programme, the relationship between some of the works but also charming anecdotes.
Soloist Senne Coomans joined the players for Mozart’s Clarinet Concerto introduced by Peter as demonstrating Mozart’s interest in new technology manifested in “Mozart’s fascination with the new instrument and show colours in the sound”. The exquisite young clarinettist joined the ensemble for a totally contrasting fiery encore, contrasting the elegance of this one of Mozart’s final works and the more rousing pizzazz the instrument is now associated with across musical genres.
Peter introduced the second half of the programme as “inspiring composers who inspired other composers” J. C. Bach, Rossini and Paganini while noting that Mozart himself had been inspired by Bach.
Cellist Christoph M. Jahn took centre podium for Bach’s Concerto in C Minor for Cello and Strings and the virtuosic playing not only delighted the audience but his fellow players, culminating with a fun thumbs up from the soloist to his concert master.
The movement into the Romantic era, with Rossini’s Sonata a quatro no 2, whisked us along with the maestro’s delight in bright, uplifting melody and challenge to these multinational string player, with the ensemble completed by Matthew Rigby from Australia, Mateuz Zuzanski from Poland and Lithuanian Jurate Cickeviciute.
The evening concluded with the finger fireworks of Paganini’s Il Papiti arranged for the ensemble by Sergey Didorenko. The pulsating big hitter proved the showpiece solo opportunity for the skills of Sergey Didorenko as intended.
The ensemble now plays St. Peter’s Church Carmarthen this evening (Aug 18) and
St Mary the Virgin Church in Coity, Nr Bridgend, on Sunday August 19.