Review of Lunchtime Recital for King’s Lynn Festival on 26 July 2011 by Lynn News
The unmistakable strains of Handel’s music opened the second of this year’s Coffee Concerts, delivered by an extremely talented pair of musicians playing oboe and piano.
Handel’s sonata in C minor is perhaps well-known for the various instruments for which it was transcribed but is well suited to the tones of the oboe, especially one in the hands of such a master as James Turnbull, who deftly dealt with all of the intricate passages of the piece.
His introductions to the pieces were witty and entertaining as well as being informative.
Saint-Saëns sonata in D major was more like a duo than oboe with piano accompaniment as each instrument had equal prominence especially in the ad libitum sections which gave an opportunity for the performers to put their own stamp on the work. They did this with great finesse.
The six studies in English Folksong from the pen of Vaughan-Williams provided James with a chance to demonstrate the melodic tones of the cor-anglais.
The final work was a Fantasia on Verdi’s Rigoletto by Daelli who as the oboist at La Scala felt that there was insufficient opportunity for the oboe to be played other than in the orchestra pit. His transcriptions certainly rectified that oversight and the piece was a memorable display of virtuoso playing from both performers. Their skills were tested to the utmost and they did not fall short, ending with a tremendous burst of sound.
The appreciative audience were delighted when they were treated to an encore of Elgar’s Soliloquy from his unfinished Oboe Concerto.
By Sheila Johnson