Aldeburgh at the French Roundabout

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					Festivals
                                                                                                          mentalists, slightly but lovingly tarted up by Sir
Aldeburgh at the French Roundabout                                                                        Harry. The premieres of Elliott Carter were
                                                                                                          Fratribute, On Conversing with Paradise and
                                                                                                          Sistribute – the latter a work for piano, played
                                                                                                          in an exciting recital by Croatian Tamara
                                                                                                          Stefanovich together with the Bartók Bagatelles,
                                                                                                          Haydn Sonata 46 and Schumann’s Kreisleriana
                                                                                                          – really good playing. All Britten’s songs with
                                                                                                          piano were sung, the most brilliantly by tenor
                                                                                                          (Michelangelo) Allen Clayton, who is surely
                                                                                                          going to be a big name.
                                                                                                              Eighteen works by Britten but no opera, no
                                                                                                          quartets, no concertos, no orchestral piece. Seems
                                                                                                          that Aldeburgh can spend millions on new
                                                                                                          buildings but not a few thousand on Britten.
                                                                                                          Shame!
                                                                                                              Aimard directed a pleasantly wacky evening
                                                                                                          on June 13, called Collage-Montage. For the
                                                                                                          first time at Aldeburgh there were played single
                                                                                                          movements of larger works (remember the
                                                                                                          BBC’s Music in Miniature): Bartók and Beet-
                                                                                                          hoven quartets, Schubert and Stockhausen
                                                                                                          jumbled consecutively together, a Carter solo
                                                                                       Aldeburgh          bassoon piece, a Bach violin fugue and bits of
                                                                                                          Kurtág’s Jatekok. Aimard, the Diotima String
         hen Pierre-Laurent Aimard, the new         remember Sir Harry saying on the radio once:          Quartet and the Haffner Wind Quintet were
W        director of the Aldeburgh Festival, was
asked by a journalist what his reaction to the
                                                    ‘I’m not in the entertainment business.’ True,
   
				
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