Welcome return for Antithesis

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THERE was a genuine anticipatory warmth in the applause which greeted the piano duo ‘Antithesis’ at the Village Hall in Swineshead recently, writes BRIAN MOORE.

This was the third occasion on which Greek-born Petros Moschos and Dimitris Karydis have visited the Windmill Music Club and those who had attended previous recitals knew they were in for another musically vibrant occasion.

Their programme of French music opened with a short early work by Debussy, ‘Lindaraja’, a rarity indeed, which anticipated the musical style the composer was soon to claim as his own. Works by Ravel and Milhaud followed, the latter with his ever popular ‘Scaramouche’ with its exciting Latin-American style finale, and the ‘Mother Goose Suite’ one of Ravel’s most famous works. Though better known in its orchestral garb the piano duet version proved highly attractive, especially in its tender colourful ‘Empress of the Pagodas’.

Continuing their French theme, works by Messiaen, Saint-Saens and Ravel formed the second part of their recital, concluding with a brilliant performance of the latter’s ‘La Valse’. Ravel was particularly attracted to the Viennese waltz and this work, though again better know in its orchestral colouring, was carried through with a mix of great sensitivity and musical panache.

The audience was reluctant to let the players go and they obliged with an encore, their own version of a movement from the ‘Carnival of the Animals’ by Saint-Saens, another huge ‘tour de force’.

This duo has won prizes and performed in many cities in Europe as well as far afield as South America. How privileged that Swineshead can still attract them.

In December, another internationally acclaimed pianist, Haruko Seki, will be performing in the Village Hall.