Monday, April 06, 2009


L'Imprévu at the Cramphorn


The unexpected ? That's what this talented trio seems to promise. And they certainly deliver, with two living composers – both present in the Cramphorn, plus an amazing unknown Edwardian composer.

This was William Yeates Hurlstone, whose tuneful Trio, with its brilliant Finale, made a thrilling end to this recital.

Apart that is from the encore, a witty take on Elgar's salon music [arranged by Imprévu's clarinet, Peter Sparks].

The other two musicians – all of them Cambridge graduates – were Shelly Organ and Tim Watts, who turned out to be a couple. We learnt this because Tim's splendid Montezuma Suite was written in Costa Rica on their honeymoon. This was enjoyable mood music, with a brief butterfly sketch followed by an agile Monkey, cleverly aping the creature's gait.

Impresario Jeffery Wilson was commissioned by the trio to write Recitatives & Aria; dreamy melodic lines, not too demanding but very listenable.

We also heard from the Old Masters – Mendelssohn's Konzertstuck no. 2, with Shelly's bassoon standing in for the basset horn, and two helpings of Beethoven – the little known Duo for Clarinet and Bassoon, and to open the recital, his opus 11 Trio, with the bassoon playing the cello part. The Adagio was exquisitely played, with an air of gentle melancholy, followed by the virtuosic, jaunty Theme and Variations.

The last of the Classical Xtra evenings, on May 15, features Jane Elston on saxophone.

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