A Musical Struggle

Last night’s concert featured something different. Something I had never seen or heard before. The second number was a piano duo with Ming Ysu at the piano and Lorenz Gamma on the violin. The piece was Alfred Schnittke’s Sonata No. 2 “Quasi una sonata.” This rather complex number involves a struggle between structure and “unstructure,” some might say between “order and chaos.” It also involves several cheap tricks built into its complexity. But neither the cheap tricks nor the complexity involves the cello. But sure enough, there were times when we could hear a cello in the background. Since we could hear it, so could Gamma and Ysu. During a rather lengthy piano interlude, Gamma hurriedly walked off stage and after his return, we heard no more of the cello.
At least, we didn’t hear it until the last number, Trio No. 2 in E Minor, Op. 67, by Dimitri Shostakovich which actually calls for a cello. Cellist Joon-Song Jun joined Ysu and Gamma for what Shirley and I thought was the highlight of the evening.
The first number, Arvo Pärt’s Mozart-Adagio for violin, cello and piano, is memorable mostly because I can’t remember much about it.

2 thoughts on “A Musical Struggle”

  1. It is just a small thing, really, but it’s spelled “Schnittke”, with an “n”. I thought, I’d better let you know. The way you have it, if you read it out loud, it sounds quite peculiar. I like your blog and the name of it. Alle the best – C.P.

  2. Christoph,
    Thanks for the comment. Yes, you are correct on both points about “Schnittke.” I fixed it. And thanks for visiting. Come again.

Comments are closed.