Comprising a string quartet with clarinet, these accomplished artists are participants in this summer's Shulman/Washiyama Advanced Performer's Seminar, a program for intensive study and performance directed by Shulman and Washiyama, based in Shushan, N.Y. The program directors enjoy performing at St. James' and the quintet of visiting players is traveling here expressly to prepare their repertoire to perform for us.
The program includes Mozart's cheerful and sophisticated "Quintet for Clarinet and Strings in A Major" and Brahms' deeply expressive "Sonata for Clarinet and Piano in F Minor." In Mozart's music the clarinet, while consummately blended with the strings, is given what would certainly have been a unique solo voice at the time this piece was written. This music then served as a lofty model for future composers.
In Brahms' case the all-important circumstance is that of he came out of self-imposed retirement because he met a clarinet virtuoso of his day whose playing so impressed the composer that he wrote four major works for him. In creating his two late sonatas - the trio with piano and cello and a quintet with strings - Brahms enriched the repertoire for this instrument immeasurably. The F Minor Sonata, alternately dark and serious and warm and friendly, is a very satisfying and engaging listening experience.
The guest musicians are currently members of various orchestras and ensembles at home in Japan. Most of them have traveled previously for studies here in the United States. They will be available for conversation after the concert.
Another special feature of the evening will be Daniel Shulman's conversational "Notes" on the music, offered during the concert.
Admission is by donation. All proceeds support the St. James' Church Music Program.
For additional information, contact the St. James Parish Office at 802 375-9952; send an e-mail to firstname.lastname@example.org, or visit www.stjamearlingtonvt .org or find them on Facebook.