20:45 – 21:45
Quintets for piano and winds – Mozart & Beethoven
Works from Wolfgang Amadeus Mozart (1756-1791) and Ludwig van Beethoven (1770-1827)
“Je le tiens pour le meilleur ouvrage que je n’ai jamais écrit … (I consider it to be the best work I have ever written…)”. These were the words of Mozart in a letter to his father Leopold on 10 April 1784 about his quintet for piano and winds K.452. First performed for a subscription concert at the Burgtheater in Vienna, this quintet for a new formation in which the winds are not doubled, accompanies other great works such as the Linz symphony or the piano concerto n°16. This period is indeed very fertile, and in this quintet Mozart resumes his privileged dialogue with the woodwinds, the same verve that will be found in his last piano concertos.
The young Beethoven was very impressed by this work and took up its instrumentation, tonality and structure in 1796. Both composers were remarkable pianists, but while Mozart offered a true chamber piece seeking union between woodwinds and piano, Beethoven sought to create a miniature concerto with a dominant part marked by cadential passages. It was during one of these pauses in the finale that Beethoven began to improvise on the rondo theme for a long time, provoking the impatience of the winds and even the anger of the famous Munich oboist Ramm.
Anthony Romaniuk pianoforte
Benoît Laurent oboe
Jean-Philippe Poncin clarinet
Bart Cypers french horn
Javier Zafra bassoon
Founded in 2012 at the Festival des Midis-Minimes, WOLF is a Belgian collective of wind players, specialised in the performance of classical music on period instruments. The use of period instruments guides the ensemble’s approach to its repertoire, which focuses on 18th and 19th century chamber music. WOLF seduced by the diversity of its membership and, desiring to be multi-generational, places transmission to others at the centre of its work. The members of the collective play on original instruments or faithful copies and are among the most sought-after Belgian musicians with renowned orchestras such as the B’Rock Orchestra, the Orchestre des Champs-Elysées, the Ricercar Consort and the Collegium Vocale Gent. The first CD of WOLF Quintets for Pianoforte & Winds, under the Evil Penguin Records label and in collaboration with Anthony Romaniuk, was released in October 2021.
Keyboardist Anthony Romaniuk’s singular artistic voice comes from his tireless exploration of a wide range of musical styles. Obsessed with jazz in his Australia boyhood, he studied classical piano in New York (Manhattan School of Music), spent several years specialising in early music (harpsichord and fortepiano in the Netherlands) and, after his studies, continued to train in the fields of improvisation, indie rock and ambient electronic music. He has performed in many of Europe’s major concert halls, including the Wigmore Hall (London), Salle Gaveau (Paris) and the Concertgebouw in Amsterdam, as well as at the Menuhin Festival (Gstaad), in addition to frequent engagements in the USA and Australia. His first solo recording Bells, released by Alpha Classics in 2020, shows how he combines repertoire and improvisation, employing the timbres of four keyboard instruments and deliberately pushing the boundaries of classical orthodoxy.