Review of The King’s School Ely Concert Society’s Guitar and Piano featuring Jadran and Emil Duncumb

This review has been commissioned by “Local Secrets” who are willing to allow you to post it on your website, provided you provide a link to “Local Secrets” – http://www.localsecrets.com

 (Local Secrets is an online guide to eating out, going out and shopping based in Cambridge. It covers Cambridgeshire and Bury St Edmunds. My reviews will go on their website and in their Monday magazine email which they email to 25k readers each week.)

Talented brothers, Jadran and Emil Duncumb, entertained an enthusiastic audience in the Hayward Theatre Ely with a fascinating programme of music for guitar and piano. At first, the guitar and piano seemed unlikely companions, but these two fine musicians demonstrated how well these instruments can be combined. With intuitive understanding, these young Norwegians synchronized perfectly. No matter how delicate or subtle, how exotic or rhythmically exciting, or how swift the changes of expression, these two always played as one – it was impossible to spot the seams.    

The opening 2 Rondos op. 68 by Mauro Giuliani were positively charming. The first Rondo was  focused, precise and detailed, never losing sight of the allure of the music. The second more melancholic Rondo captured the attention with its exquisite timing.

Emil played Beethoven’s piano sonata no. 6 in F major with amazing dexterity, heightening the effect with an astute sense of touch and shaping Beethoven’s changeable dynamics perfectly.

Fantasia by Castelbuovo-Tedesco gelled piano and guitar together in moments of sheer atmospheric delight. This Debussy-like composition gave the piano gorgeous schmaltzy chords and moments of percussive novelty in the guitar. Together, the musicians explored the effects to the full. After moments of jagged excitement enlivened matters the piece finally eased towards its magical finish.

After interval, Jadran played Variations on a Theme by Scriabin written by Alexandre Tansman. Jadran always kept the outline of the theme clear as he led us through a fascinating array of variations from the most subtle to the most complex.

A Diabelli sonata for piano and guitar was a most suitable ending to the evening reminding us of Beethoven’s era of approachable music that will always have a place in the concert repertoire. More sensitive interplay between these two highly accomplished performers in this piece brought the evening to a delightful close.

Forthcoming events for the King’s School Ely include:

King’s Senior School Musicians performing in the Recital Hall at 6 p.m. on Friday 3rd July

An open-air production of The Comedy of Errors by Shakespeare in the Arts Courtyard at 7 p.m.

And an Afternoon Masterclass and Evening Recital with the Cann Twins on Friday 24th September.

Contact: boxoffice@kings-ely.cambs.sch.uk

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