INTERMEZZO CHAMBER MUSIC SERIES, Vieve Gore Concert Hall, Westminster College, Monday
The Intermezzo Chamber Music Series opened its new season Monday with a wonderful program that included the world premiere of a piece by composer and trumpet player Anthony DiLorenzo titled "Street Musicians."
Scored for the unusual combination of violin, cello, trumpet, trombone and accordion, the piece was played by Utah Symphony colleagues David Porter, violin; Meeka Quan DiLorenzo, cello; and Larry Zalkind, trombone. They were joined by accordionist Igor Iachimciuc, with the composer taking the trumpet part.
"Street Musicians" is a witty little piece with a lot of humor. It parodies street musicians in Paris (complete with an open violin case that DiLorenzo positioned in front of Porter and dropped a bill into) playing dance music. The five players gave a captivating reading that underscored the unpretentiousness of the three-movement piece with irresistible charm.
On the other end of the emotional scale was Maurice Ravel's Piano Trio in A minor, which closed out the concert. One of the most luminous trios in the repertoire, it doesn't receive the recognition it deserves, partly because it is so technically demanding (particularly for the pianist) and partly because it has been overshadowed by Ravel's orchestral music and his works for piano. Because of that, it's always a treat whenever someone decides to program it.
The trio is especially ravishing when it's played as well as it was Monday by Porter, Quan-DiLorenzo and pianist Heather Conner. They captured the work's radiant lyricism and evocative expressiveness in the first and third movements, as well as the ebullience and electrifying energy of the fiendishly demanding second and fourth movements. It was a vibrant and compelling performance that lacked nothing in the way of nuance and sensitivity to detail.
The concert began with Quan-DiLorenzo and Conner playing Astor Piazzolla's Grand Tango. Their well-defined reading brought out the intensity of expression and restless energy of the opening and closing sections of the piece, as well as the exquisite lyricism of the middle section.There was also a surprise on the concert. Between the Piazzolla and DiLorenzo works, Porter came onstage and played Elliott Carter's stringent yet lyrically captivating "Statement" for solo violin from his "4 Lauds" as a tribute to Carter, who turns 100 in December. (There will be other short pieces by Carter on the remaing four Intermezzo concerts this summer.)