Zaïde Quartet at Triskel Christchurch, October 16th 2015
Tonight the young French ensemble, Zaïde Quartet come to Cork for the second last concert of their tour of Ireland. They present an interesting programme of works in both the classical and modern styles and as they are in Ireland, they have also chosen to include a work by Irish composer Philip Martin.
First up is Shostakovich’s Quartet No. 7. The ensemble manages to get the perfect balance between the underlying nervous energy and the somewhat sombre nature of the work. The group also make good use of the performing space in terms of sound knowing exactly how soft they can play and still be heard. This is then nicely contrasted by the Mozart Quartet in G major. It is immediately apparent that the group take great pleasure in playing this work. Here the quartet appears to be more at ease, conveying the work both energetically and expressively. Their interpretation is fresh and, most importantly, engaging.
They choose to open the second half of the concert with Philip Martin’s Celebration Quartet, which was commissioned by West Cork Chamber Music Festival to celebrate the tenth anniversary of the festival in 2005. The short work is well delivered and ties in very well with the rest of their programme. This is followed by Bartók’s Quartet No. 5 which first violinist Charlotte Juillard had earlier described as ‘music from space’ upon hearing the work for the first time. The quartet deftly brings out the folk music elements of the work and also manage to make what sound like a series of strange sounds into an intricate dance.
Overall the programme is well chosen for the intimate surrounds of Triskel Christchurch and is performed with great élan by the quartet.
Shostakovich – String Quartet No. 7 in f# minor
Mozart – String Quartet in G major, K387
Philip Martin – ‘Celebration Quartet’ (2005)
Bartók – String Quartet No. 5 in Bb major
Encore: Haydn – String Quartet No. 5 in F major “The Dream” (2nd Movement), Op. 50
Charlotte Juillard – Violin
Leslie Boulin-Raulet – Violin
Sarah Chenaf – Viola
Juliette Salmona – Cello