Music review: Nachtmusique
Edinburgh International Festival Scotsman review: Nachtmusique at Queen’s Hall, reviewed by Carol Main
THEIR name might mean “night music”, but the life-affirming joie de vivre of Nachtmusique worked wonderfully well for a Queen’s Hall morning concert yesterday, in a cheerful all-Mozart programme.
The instruments of principal clarinet Eric Hoeprich and his band are as much a visual as an aural feast. Valveless period horns had several coils of tubing winding around to form their shape, while the boxwood basset horns, including one played by Hoeprich, had their bodies bent in two at an obtuse angle with a brass bell fixed on at the end.
Whether in small ensembles of two or three, or the enlarged group who took on Mozart’s Gran Partita with unabated relish, the variety of music and sonorities produced by these old instruments was endlessly fascinating. With extra weight from a gut-stringed double bass, the music danced, swaggered and raced to its galloping finale with some fine solo as well as ensemble playing. Mozart’s Overture to The Magic Flute in an arrangement by his contemporary, Joseph Heidenreich, was a particularly impressive party piece, although the series of adagios preceding it failed to make their mark quite as spectacularly.
Originally published in The Scotsman