Paul Roe (clarinets), ConTempo String Quartet: Dreams & Prayers

Fri, Mar 8, 2013, 12:40


Beethoven: Sonata in C op 2 No 3; Ravel: Valses Nobles et Sentimentals; Chopin: Nocturne Op 27 No 2; Ballade No 1

Arthur Rubinstein

ICA Classics


H H H Galway’s ensemble in residence, the ConTempo Quartet, has been in situ for 10 years now. This CD marking the milestone features works for clarinet (Paul Roe) and string quartet. Osvaldo Golijov’s The Dreams and Prayers of Isaac the Blind, intended as “a kind of epic, a history of Judaism,” and Nick Roth’s Clarinet Quintet, a set of variations “where the theme of the work is the character of the Jewish people,” both delve into the world of klezmer. The playing in the Golijov needs more swagger and less effort, while Roth’s music strains for effects the material won’t yield. It’'s the more abstract explorations of Jane O’Leary Soundshapes II, which get the most consistently persuasive performance.