After a long winter in the deep freeze (in more ways than one) – at last! – a concert to tell you about.
It won’t be performed in front of a live audience – that long-awaited moment is probably still months away- but it will be broadcast on YouTube and Facebook on March 11.
I’ll be playing piano quartets by Mozart and Fauré with principal players of the Scottish Chamber Orchestra: Maria Wloszczowska (violin), Felix Tanner (viola) and Philip Higham (cello). These piano quartets are two of my favourites in the whole repertoire. Fauré’s Piano Quartet in C minor, opus 15 was the first piece I ever recorded, with my group Domus for Hyperion Records, and a memorable experience it was too because that first disc won a Gramophone Award.
So I know the music well – although of course when you tackle it with a different group of people, some of whom you’ve only just met, you have to engage with a whole new set of questions and answers.
Mozart’s G minor piano quartet is the first example we know of a piano quartet, and still one of the best despite a fair amount of competition over 200 years, especially in the Romantic era when piano quartets were very popular.
When I played in a professional piano quartet, most of our audiences wanted to hear one of Mozart’s two piano quartets (in G minor and in E flat major). It sometimes felt as though we were playing one or other of them every Saturday night somewhere or other, but my admiration for them survived undimmed – which was not the case with every piece we performed lots and lots of times.
The SCO Spring series concert of piano quartets will be recorded this week in the Queen’s Hall in Edinburgh and broadcast on Thursday 11 March at 7.30pm.