The richness and complexity of the relationship between the flute,
viola and harp is explored in this chamber concert of 20th century
The exquisite combined sound of these three instruments has an
intimacy, rich timbre and sonorous complexity that is both powerful and
playful. It was something Claude Debussy knew, composing his sonata for
flute, viola and harp in 1915. It is a stunning and supple piece,
capable of long mournful phrases and sudden flights of movement.
Experimental Russian composer Sofia Gubaidulina has a widely differing approach with herGarden of Joys and Sorrows,
a piece that captures an otherworldly atmosphere through a series of
musical flourishes, often at the limits of the instruments’ ranges. It
is daring and strangely beautiful.
Frenchman Jacques Ibert was a composer who refused to tie himself to
any one school of compositional thought, resulting in an eclectic
output that refuses straight categorisation. His music was capable of
frivolity, but also deep tenderness. Both can be heard in his Deux Interludes, composed in 1946.
And then I knew ’twas wind, by one of the 20th century’s
most important Japanese composers, Tōru Takemitsu, is another striking
argument for this combination of instruments. Delicate and intricate, it
was influenced by the Debussy, but has wonderfully idiosyncratic
signature of its own.