Les Vents Français ****
Wigmore Hall, 11th December 2014
“Alchemy (noun): Medieval forerunner of chemistry; in particular, with attempts to convert base metals into gold.” Les Vents Français are musical alchemists. Few would stake strong claims that the repertoire for wind quintet repertoire is anything special (Nielsen’s Quintet excepted). If not quite leaden, some of the quintets and sextets with piano performed at Wigmore Hall were rather humdrum, works by second rank composers, sometimes aping the style of the greats. Yet this ensemble, whose members include some starry names, performed so stylishly that their recital shimmered under a golden haze.
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