Handheld precision

Copenhagen Soloists were at the Domkirke with a beautiful baroque program.

Ole Josephsen, music reviewer (Helsingør Dagblad, 9 January, 2019)

Four soloists from the ensemble Copenhagen Soloists composed the quartet, which on Sunday afternoon performed a well-attended concert at Helsingør Domkirke.

They called the program “Between Paris and Hamburg”, in that the works which they played were composed by three composers in Paris and one in Hamburg. The style was baroque, and all four were contemporaries of J.S. Bach.

The participants were Winnie Bugge Frandsen, transverse flute, Jonathan Ofir, violin, Hanna Thiel, viola da gamba, and Gilbert Martinez, harpsichord, and they emphasized Copenhagen Soloists’s international aspect by representing Denmark, Israel, Germany an USA.

Elegant and fiery

From Jean Marie Leclair, born 1697, we heard an Ouverture in several movements, where it was the transverse flute which had the main part, while the others constituted the harmonic fundament in this light and elegant music.

Jean Philippe Rameau, born 1683, composed several ”Pièces de clavecin en concert”, of which we heard nr.3. Here the harpsichord has a natural leading part. In the final Tambourine movement the tempo rose gradually and the work ended with fire and fury.

Music for dance

Francois Couperin, born 1668, was a harpsichord teacher for Louis XIV’s children and composed a series of ”Concerts Royaux” (royal concerts). Here we heard the first concert, where the movements were composed for the baroque dances: Allemande, Sarabande, Gavotte, Gigue and Menuet. Delivered with precision and elegance.

Georg Philipp Telemann, born 1681, was a very industrious composer. Stylistically, his music is between Bach and Haydn and with considerable French influence. Here we heard his “new” Paris-quartets from 1738, where the many movements have French names, for example Très vite, Gracieusement and Moderé. The four musicians had the opportunity to stand out with brilliant soli, dialogues, joyous games and displaced rhythms, before the whole landed softly and seriously in the last movement.

Copenhagen Soloists often perform larger works with many participants, yet here we met four dedicated chamber musicians, who played with insight, handheld precision and elegance.