One Sunday Afternoon...

The following is from a blog by Richard Sparks...


Sunday, June 15

Today a trip to Wye for the Stour Festival to hear David Munrow's Early Music Consort at 3 PM. Munrow was an early music pioneer who we just managed to hear live--as he committed suicide in 1976.

This was a fascinating program:

a piece with recorder and drone by Munrow absolutely incredibly played--the runs were so fast they were hard to follow in the church acoustic--that's probably the effect intended, however, Rick recorded it--I'd really like a copy [I don't have one]--then renaissance dances for broken consort, all very well played (and danceable--if I do any of this kind of music, I'll have to enroll in a renaissance dance class)--a baroque guitar suite--beautifully played--James Tyler's virtuosity is stunning (on lute, guitar, and banjo)--he looks all the time like your typical banjo player: a smile on his face the whole time--he was fun to watch as well as listen to--the violinist played a Biber passacaglia--the piece itself went on a bit long--Biber seemed to want to show every possible thing that one could do over those 4 notes--he played very well, but I couldn't help but compare every baroque fiddle player I hear to Eduard Melkus--his performance of the Biber Mystery Sonatas in Eugene [in 1972 at the Oregon Bach Festival] was eye-opening . . . the second half of the concert followed with a selection of rags arranged by Tyler for guitar, two banjos, violin, bass viol, and bassoon (David Munrow played a French bassoon!)--they were well done and a lot of fun--especially enjoyable was a rendition of one of Brahms Hungarian Dances on the banjo by Tyler--all-in-all an incredibly enjoyable concert.

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