Music For A Sunday Afternoon

Music Classical music Chamber music
  • Saint-Saëns Tarantella for flute, clarinet and piano
  • Guillaume Connesson Techno Parade for clarinet, flute and piano
  • Piazzolla Concierto para Quinteto for string quartet and piano
  • Mendelssohn Concert Piece No. 1, Op. 113 for clarinet, basset horn and piano
  • Weber Clarinet Quintet, Op. 34

Experience the glory of the clarinet and its enigmatic relative the basset horn in today’s concert, curated by and featuring Kimball Sykes, the National Arts Centre Orchestra’s principal clarinetist since 1985.

Camille Saint-Saëns’s playful and spirited Tarantella for flute, clarinet, and piano is fiendishly demanding and frightfully fun, taking the form of a musical dance originating in southern Italy that was said to cure the bite of a tarantula. Dance fast and hard enough, and the poison will leave your body!

Venture inside and outside the piano with Guillaume Connesson’s short, wild, and frenetic Techno Parade, and don’t be surprised if, at the end, you find yourself exhaling a breath you didn’t know you were holding.

Astor Piazzolla’s Concierto para Quinteto is, for many, a new encounter with the expressive sounds and rhythms of Argentina. By turns playful and melancholic, the piece illuminates Piazzolla’s genius and authenticity, brought to joyful life in the hands of these talented players.

Mendelssohn was said to have affectionately titled his Concert Piece No. 1 the “Grand Duet for Steamed Dumplings and Sweet Cheese Strudel.” The work was written to fulfil Mendelssohn’s part of a deal with Munich court musicians Heinrich Joseph Baermann and his son Carl, in exchange for a dinner of Mendelssohn’s beloved steamed dumplings, which he could not get in Berlin. Sean Rice, the NAC Orchestra’s second clarinetist, brings the instrument’s cousin, the basset horn, to life.

The expressive possibilities of Weber’s evocative Clarinet Quintet range from the sublime to the sweet, allowing a perfect instrumental balance between clarinet and string quartet that is rich and smooth as honey.

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