Wednesday’s violin recital was performed by this year’s graduate musician, Eleanor Shute. The recital opened with the evocative Chant de Roxane by Szymanowski. Exotic scales in the high register of the muted violin moved into a resonant lyrical song which was played with deep understanding. The chanson is from the opera King Roger and it is a transcription of Roxane’s aria where she sings to the King and pleads that the life of a shepherd be spared. This was beautifully realised by the soaring climactic melodies at the centre of the piece. A reflective ending played in harmonics closed this fine performance.
Eleanor went on to play two movements from Kabalevsky’s Violin concerto in C major, op.48. The Andante cantabile was strong and the folk inflection played with a great sense of style. Eleanor demonstrated mastery of her instrument as she played with conviction and complete immersion in the powerful theme. This strident theme was later taken on by the piano; played in a measured manner as the violin ascends into a virtuoso display of sequential scales and ornaments. The Allegro molto e con brio was played with spirit and was vivacious in character. This movement was an exciting display of melodic ideas and the imitative rapport with the piano was as delightful. The audience enjoyed an eruption of fervour as the recapitulation came to a close through a succession of exhilarating arpeggiated figures. Eleanor is congratulated on her very fine performance.
Thanks to Peter Davis, Director of Music, for his piano accompaniment.