Clar­inet vir­tu­oso’s apoc­a­lyp­tic vibe

The Tribune (NZ) - - ARTS & ENTERTAINMENT -

Quar­tet For The End of Time is the ti­tle of an evoca­tive and apoc­a­lyp­tic sound­ing piece that will be per­formed at the Re­gent on Broad­way next Tues­day.

In­spired by a verse in the Book of Rev­e­la­tion, French com­poser Olivier Mes­si­aen wrote and per­formed its pre­miere dur­ing 1941 while an un­will­ing ‘‘guest’’ at Ger­man pris­oner of war camp, Sta­lag VIII-A.

Played on what­ever in­stru­ments were avail­able, its first au­di­ence com­prised 400 fel­low pris­on­ers of war and camp guards.

That was 75 years ago, and the Quar­tet will pro­vide the fi­nale of the Cham­ber Mu­sic New Zealand Re­gent on Broad­way con­cert by Bri­tish clar­inet vir­tu­oso Ju­lian Bliss and the NZTrio.

NZTrio pi­anist Sarah Watkins says the Quar­tet is a com­bi­na­tion of sonor­ity and colour re­flect­ing a ‘‘mys­ti­cal world of bird­song, deep spir­i­tu­al­ity and faith, all wrapped in a time­less lu­mi­nous haze’’.

For the CMNZ tour, Kiwi com­poser Ross Har­ris was com­mis­sioned to write a com­ple­men­tary piece to the Quar­tet.

The re­sult is There may be light. It joins De­bussy’s Premie`re rhap­sodie for clar­inet and pi­ano, and Mil­haud’s suite for vi­o­lin, clar­inet and pi­ano.

Next Tues­day’s 7.30pm CMNZ con­cert opens with a free pre-con­cert talk at 6.45pm.

Tick­ets are avail­able through tick­et­di­rect.co.nz or 0800 224 224. For fur­ther de­tails visit cham­ber­mu­sic.co.nz/ ju­lian­bliss

PHOTO: SUP­PLIED

Bri­tish clar­inet vir­tu­oso Ju­lian Bliss is joined on the Cham­ber Mu­sic New Zealand tour by the NZ Trio, with a 75th an­niver­sary per­for­mance of Mes­si­aen’s Quar­tet For The End of Time.

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