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Daniel Rowland and Natacha Kudritskaja – Hudiksvalls Tidning

Daniel Rowland and Natacha Kudritskaja – Hudiksvalls Tidning (27th February 2015)

Joy of playing – in a league of its own

Maybe it is somewhat early to nominate a concert of the year already in February, but Daniel Rowland and Natacha Kudritskaja’s performance in the Baptistkyrkan in Hudiksvall will be very hard to beat.

This judgement comes from a programme focusing on late romantic  and pro modernistic music  interpreted in a way that took the audience’s breath away – Debussy, Bartok, the too seldom played Romanian composer Georges Enescu. After the interval came Cesar Frank and Poulenc. With Kudritskaja at the piano and Rowland on the violin the dramatic tension was present from the very first bar of Debussy’s late sonata, which amazed with incredibleinterpretation and a continuous struggle, far from the timbral coolness.

A glittering performance with total immersion, Rowland’s tone built its own concert hall. It was attacking and authoritative whilst Kudritskaja was absolute and comprehensive.

The vernacular passion exists both in Bartok’s and Enescu’s music, but what is ecstatically intoxicating in Bartok’s music is intellectually passionate in Enescu’s. Rowland made Bartok’s Romanian Folk Dances with a perfect lack of  restraint and the transition to Enescu’s  youthful sonata felt completely congenial.

Enescu’s mucis is new for most people – he was a contemporary of Bartok’s, his  music is extremely rich and his maturity is surprising seeing as he was only eighteen when he composed the sonata. It is full of broad harmonies, attacking crescendos and imagination.

The performance was magical, the kind that makes the surroundings fade away and makes the church pews seem heavenly soft. Lost and seduced you loose time but not feeling. Two musicians with an absolute grip over their music, constantly investing everything in their expressions and also gaining themselves, it was amazing to see.

The contrast between Francis Poulenc’s bold attitude and Cesar Frank’s yearning romance is really incredible. Two important violin sonatas with an vast coverage in phraseology and form. Poulenc’s freshness may have won over Frank’s lyrical sweetness, but both coexist despite their dissimilarities. Poulenc varies his phrasing, refines and accentuates, while Frank cares about the whole feel, the music warm and melancholy.

A consistent and well thought-out programme – demanding, but equal and strong in its expression. Two fabulously powerful solo performances. All together, a seamless concert.

Jan-Olov Nyström (translated by Ingmar Höglund)

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