Poulenc Trio up to the challenge at Kiggins Hall

The exceptional gifts of the Poulenc Trio were a welcome diversion to the large crowd Saturday night

The exceptional gifts of the Poulenc Trio were a welcome diversion to the large crowd Saturday night at Kiggins Hall as part of the Friends of Chamber Music series.

Generally, a lack of repertoire is the reason you don’t hear an oboe, bassoon and piano trio often. But oboist Vladimir Lande, bassoonist Bryan Young and pianist Irina Lande have plumbed the possibilities.

They impressed on several levels with rich, warm tones that in Young’s case were robustly thrilling with the degree of emphasis he used. Irina Lande’s touch was always refined, sure and light.

Their musicality was sensitive and sometimes sensuous, their techniques secure and fleet, their pitch and balances exact, their breath control effortless and their manner confident. Their preparation was incredible. Even the speed of their trills had been worked out.

They began with Glinka’s “Trio Pathetique in D minor,” which had a lovely operatic kind of lyricism. They applied an imaginative use of dynamics and good pacing.

Rimsky-Korsakov’s “Skomorokhi Dance” from his “The Snow Maiden” was short and festive and had a lot of finger-twisters for the oboe and bassoon. Nothing was out of place.

Rossini’s “Fantaisie Concertante,” based on his “L’Italiana in Algeri,” was a 19th century potpourri concocted by two Paris Conservatory professors to test players’ skills. The trio was adept with particularly light attacks.

The love for Poulenc’s trio was the reason for choosing his name for the group almost five years ago, Irina said. The piece was beautifully written for the three instruments, but the players curiously didn’t sound as fresh.

But they were wonderful in Piazzolla’s two fabulous tangos, “Oblivion” and “Otono Porteno,” which were lushly exotic.

The premiere of three of Gonzalez-Medina’s five movements from his “Suite Latina” lacked fire, but one of the movements from Previn’s Trio was jaunty and showed off Irina’s skills.

They showed pizzazz in their encore of a fast movement by Handel.

Categories: Life and Arts

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