Friday, October 12, 2012

Concert: SF Conservatory Faculty Concert (w/ Wieland Kuijken and Eve Langene) (10/10/2012)



Wieland Kuijken, Corey Jamason, Elisabeth Reed, and Eve Legene

10/10/2012
San Francisco Conservatory of Music

Jean-Marie Leclair: 
Trio Sonata in D Major Op. 2, No. 8 for alto recorder, viola da gamba, and basso continuo

Marin Marais: 
Suite in E Minor from Seconde Livre de Piecès de Viole for viola da gamba and continuo

Couperin:
Septième Prélude from L’art de toucher le clavecin
Les Baricades Mistérieuses from Sixiême Ordre
Deuxiéme Concert from Concert Royaux for recorder and basso continuo

J.S. Bach:  
Sonata in E Major, BWV 1035 for alto recorder and basso continuo
Sonata in G Major, BWV 1027 for viola da gamba and obbligato harpsichord

Vivaldi: 
Trio sonata in A Minor RV 86 for alto recorder, viola da gamba and continuo


Corey Jamason, harpsichord
Elisabeth Reed, viola da gamba
Eva Legene, recorder
Wieland Kuijken, viola da gamba 


一年半前有幸在灣區一睹gamba大師Wieland Kuijken的風采。這週,Kuijken再度光臨灣區,和直笛家Legene在舊金山音樂院開大師班,並和音樂院的老師們Jamason和Reed合開音樂會。得知音樂會的消息,馬上二話不說就決定上去了。非音樂院的學生,票價差不多要$20,但後來透過音樂院就讀的朋友PJ,為我和另一位朋友弄到了免費的票,真是太過癮了。在這兒要再特別感謝一次PJ~~


 

音樂會是八點開始,所以在之前三人找了附近的泰國餐廳Ler Ros Thai享用晚餐。除了綠咖哩雞和pad thai兩道常見到的菜,我們特別點了個道地泰式的catfish,調的咖哩醬是不加椰奶的,而且還加了一些香料。味道很特別,可接受,不過不會被列入往日的常點泰式菜就是了 :)




在舊金山音樂院聽音樂會不是第一次。只是,那一次是在比較大的音樂廳,古中提琴的聲音太弱了。從台上傳到觀眾那邊,已經是有氣無力,為一大敗筆。這天的音樂在是在比較小的一個廳,我們雖然坐在二樓,但是古中提琴的聲音明顯渾厚多了。而大鍵琴和直笛的聲音清楚,音量恰好,完全達到了室內樂該有的平衡。

上半場的曲目皆為法國作曲家的音樂,雖然第一首Leclair的曲式是受到義大利音樂影響最深。這首作品二的奏鳴曲(曲目單上打錯,打成作品十一,極有可能輸入的工讀生將羅馬數字II 誤看成11)原為給小提琴/長笛/直笛的奏鳴曲,不過Leclair後來有改編成作品十三的三重奏鳴曲。從一開始,就感覺到Legene和Kuijken設下的風格為「實而不華」,不會刻意誇張的成份,但音樂的修飾很實在。另外,Jamason彈奏數字低音(bass continuo)的時候,音色格外輕盈,是推動音樂的一個助力,和Kuijken古中提琴的平穩延續性儼然形成有趣的對比。

傳統法國巴洛克的曲子,則是在接下來的Marais與Couperin,三段曲子的主角分別為Kuijken,Jamason,與Legene。這些音樂「呼吸」的方式,和德義風格的音樂不同,也不見得是一般人容易接受的。我覺得音樂的「精緻」感,初次聽的Julia倒是說得很中肯:「需要耐性」。

首先Marais的古中提琴曲,我認為是法國gamba音樂裡的極品。這時的焦點,自然是放在Kuijken上。大部份的舞曲長度都不長,而我覺得最美的Allemande,大師Kuijken對音符在時間以及強弱上的處理,恰到好處。組曲裡的最後一首最長,為紀念恩師的Tombeau pour Monsieur de Sainte Colombe,徐緩的音樂在憂愁的冥想下劃下句點。

接下來是Couperin的大鍵琴獨奏曲。Jamason彈的兩首小品,我正好自己也練過。Jamason的詮釋方式跟我想像得非常不一樣,雖然有很好的執行力,但終究不是我喜歡的彈奏方式。第一首prelude,他有點過份放鬆,讓我感到音樂行進受到影響。而第二首的名曲「神祕的障礙」,則覺得太衝得太直接了些。他在主旋律的也方,加了buff stop,別的部份彈到上排去,是個很有趣的選擇。不過整體而言,這兩首小品的演奏方式我的接受度是偏低的。

Couperin的第二首Concert Royaux,是室內樂版,由Legene吹出高音部。整體而言,我對Couperin的Concert Royaux沒有特別喜愛或厭惡。這首比較有趣的地方,除了在第二和第四樂章的舞曲中有賦格的元素之外,最後一首有Echos的標題。Legene,Kuijken,和Jamason這方面的處理略為平淡,沒有特別彰顯回聲的效果就是了。

說到下半場,則是換到了大家熟悉的德義派的音樂,還是最有名的代表:巴哈與韋瓦第。這三首我都練過一部份,所以對音樂本身的認識不算淺。第一首是巴哈的長笛奏鳴曲,這兒用直笛演奏也不妥。而上半場Legene較為平淡的演奏,到了巴哈的時候感到突然她活了起來,變了一個人。這首是這晚我最欣賞的表演。

BWV 1027的古中提琴奏鳴曲,雖然寫給古中提琴和大鍵琴兩個樂器,但實為三重奏鳴的結構。高音部由gamba與大鍵琴右手兩部交織,而低音部則給大鍵琴的左手。因為練過巴哈之寫給兩支長笛的三重奏鳴曲版,所以對大鍵琴右手的部份會特別留意。要不然,大鍵琴聲音的薄弱,很容易就被gamba的提琴聲給蓋過去了。Jamason在這首中,擺脫了彈奏數字低音,和Kuijken實質上平起平坐。這首的慢樂章悠揚,而快樂章,音樂不斷的催促前進,特別是第四樂章的精湛,聽得實在是非常痛快。不用說,這是整場音樂會我第二喜歡的。

而最後的Vivaldi,剛好是我練過的第一首古樂室內樂曲子,所以對我有某個特殊的意義。Legene在演奏上的創意,完全發揮在最後這一首上。她之前都是很保守地照譜彈奏,但到了Vivaldi這首,卻開始大量加譜上原本沒有的裝飾音,算是另一個小驚喜。整體而言,他們演奏的速度偏慢一點,但Legene的直笛演奏下,不失其音樂性。

音樂會結束,再度和Kuijken大師合照,並請他簽CD~~   雖然上次已拍過照,不過每次留影都在不同的時空背景下,所以仍是有一定的新鮮感和價值。

Maestro Wieland Kuijken


Heard about Kuijken's concert literally just days before it.  I have previously heard Kuijken play through the San Francisco Early Music Society event and overall enjoyed it very much.  The concert program offered this time was even more intriguing that I could not pass up the opportunity.  Through a friend who is studying at the conservatory, she was able to get free comp tickets for me and another friend.  Not a bad deal by any means!

The concert was part of a series of events, where Mr. Kuijken and recordist Ms. Legene gave master classes the day before.  The concert was held at the SF Conservatory of Music, where I also attended a SFEMS concert a year ago.  Unlike last time, where it was played in a very large hall and the gamba and harpsichord sound were basically drowned out, this time it was held in a smaller hall.  The result was that the gamba sound projected nice and strong, even for us sitting in the balcony.  The gambas, harpsichord, and recorder sound struck a good balance, and I couldn't ask for more.

The first and second halves of the program were conveniently divided into French and non-French repertoire, respectively.  Leclair's music was most influenced by the Italian style, and the sonata shows.  The op.2 sonata was originally written for violin/flute/recorder and exists in an alternate arrangement in his latter op.13 overtures and sonatas (the first sonata).  Even with this piece, the ensemble set the tone for their overall style, which was solid and less adventurous, as one may put it.  Legene's playing also reminded me a bit of Marion Verbruggen. 

The core of the French pieces were in the following pieces by Marais and Couperin, with Kuijken, Jamason, and Legene each under the spotlight briefly.  The main task of playing Marais, which I regard the finest French gamba music composer, undoubtedly fell on Mr. Kuijken.  Kuijken treatment was of great delicacy, giving the music room and allowing it to breathe.  Of the pieces in the suite, I enjoyed the Allemande the most (I usually do).  The last piece was the Tombeau pour Monsieur de Sainte Colombe, a tribute to his mentor.  As with tombeaus, it had and extremely solemn and melancholy feel to it.  Sensuous indeed, but just very sad....    

Then came the two short Couperin harpsichord pieces, which both coincidentally I've learned to play at some point.  The prelude comes from Couperin's teaching method "The Art of Playing the Harpsichord", while "The Mysterious Barricades" probably is Couperin's most famous piece to date.  While Jamason's playing was very consistently executed, somehow I didn't find it as convincing for me.  For the prelude, I would have liked for him to not relax as much and drive the music a bit more.   Whereas for "The Mysterious Barricades", I thought he played it a bit too straightforward and did not allow for some relaxation.  His use of the buff stop for the refrain was an interesting touch though. 


I don't think I've ever developed any particular liking or dislike of Couperin's Concert Royaux.  It's one of those pieces for me that just kind of set a general mood but nothing ever sticks out enough to grab my attention.  The second concert does have its nice moments.  Aside from the two fugal movements, it also ends with an Echos movement.  While I expected the ensemble to do something with it, their playing was on the mild side.   

Ultimately though, the more enjoyable pieces were from the second half, with music by Bach and Vivaldi.  Coincidentally again, I've also worked on parts of each piece, which made the experience all the more personal.  The first piece of the second half was Bach's E major flute sonata, which fits nicely on the recorder just as well.  If I thought Legene was merely solid in the first half, here's where I found Legene to be most animated and musical.  She literally sprung to life here, and this was arguably the piece I enjoyed the most of the entire concert.   

The gamba sonata was a close second.  I hadn't worked on this piece technically, but I've played the trio sonata version for two flutes with other friends.  Even written for gamba and harpsichord, it's really a trio sonata texture, with the right hand of the harpsichord taking the other line, which is also commonly seen in his violin sonatas.   Having worked through parts of the music made me more keen of the harpsichord treble line, which could be easily overpowered by the gamba's sustaining notes.  While Jamason's continuo playing was generally light and bouncy, good for driving the music, here Jamason's harpsichord role was the equal of Kuijken's gamba.  His playing also showed, where the notes now sounded more grounded and carried more weight to them.  The two fast movements, especially the last one, are a display of virtuosity and endurance, as the bass line has several wild runs.    

The concert concluded with a Vivaldi trio sonata.  It's the first ensemble piece that I've ever played on the harpsichord, so this piece was also special to me as well.  The group played a little slower than I expected.  However, Legene packed another nice surprise here.  Up to this point, she's been playing fairly "by the book", but out of nowhere in this Vivaldi sonata, she starts ornamenting... a lot.  I found it extremely fresh, and it was a very satisfying experience.

After the concert, I had Mr. Kuijken sign two of my CDs that I acquired since our last meeting.  Not sure when he'll be returning to the Bay Area, but if he does, we'll be doing this again :) 

No comments:

Post a Comment