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The ancient stones of St Illtud’s Church have provided a haven for reflection and meditation over the centuries. Perhaps more than ever, we can all benefit from some peace and quietude away from the hectic world we live in. This event provides such an opportunity. Out of periods of silence, the alternate voices of solo cello and viola emerge, creating a unique atmosphere designed to provide both time and space for personal contemplation.
Receiving its UK premiere, Vasks’s Sala has been likened to Barber’s much loved Adagio for Strings. There is certainly a synergy: a gentle whisper of shimmering sounds that builds up to a sweeping crescendo of tense emotion, finally resolved on a note of heavenly peace. We hear it performed alongside a new orchestral work from Mark David Boden and Guto Puw’s Violin Concerto – Soft Stillness in which each movement offers a direct response to lines from Shakespeare’s The Merchant of Venice.
Quatuor Tana and the Danish accordion player Andreas Borregaard represent an exciting new generation of classical musicians – players who have no boundaries in their approach to styles and genres. Their enthusiasm and commitment to contemporary repertoire is reflected in this lunchtime concert that features two world premieres.
Ensemble MidtVest explore the chamber music of our Artistic Director, John Metcalf. Characterised by a rich vein of contemplation and tranquillity they provide, as one commentator noted, “a gift that complements a day that goes well or respite on a day that requires it”. The concert ends with Vasks’s powerful Piano Quartet, a searing and emotional love song to his native Latvia.
Parmela Attariwala, violin
Shawn Mativetsky, tabla
Dance House, Wales Millennium Centre
Parmela Attariwala is one of Canada’s most original and compelling performers. Simultaneously playing the violin and dancing, she weaves an intriguing tapestry of music and traditional south Asian choreography. Joined by tabla player Shawn Mativetsky the duo perform an enthralling programme of music that melds contemporary composition with traditional Indian rhythms.