Notes from last night’s performance by Trilogy, St George’s, Bristol. Thursday 8 Sep 2016
Last night’s event at St George’s was a performance by Trilogy, three brilliantly talented violinists and their accompanying pianist. Each musician played with a huge amount of passion, commitment, energy and enthusiasm and their efforts were certainly reciprocated by the generosity of the Bristol crowd, who at times seemed bewitched by the individual performances.
One of the joys of attending concerts and events at St George’s in Bristol is how very close you can sit to the performers on stage. Such closeness brings an intimacy with the music that’s very rarely on offer at larger venues, and enables you to gain an insight into the performance. The spectator can witness every tremor, how the expression of emotion and pleasure is evoked on such an individual level. You see every glance between the musicians, how different hand positions and placement of the violin’s bow can create different tone and timbre, how violins can be both percussive and loud and how each of the players has their own distinct personality from gregarious, to shy, to suave.
It’s not easy to witness this level of individualism in larger ensembles. By their very nature they have to behave as an homogenous group with an agreed and rehearsed plan – there’s no place for a Maverick performance! Conductors and soloists are encouraged to display their emotion and any TV cameras focus on their performances and expressive style. But even then, the viewer is watching courtesy of the director’s cues – you see what the director deems to be of interest and the musicians’ individual technique doesn’t tend to be the main focus.
So I’d really encourage anyone practicing or studying music to get as close as they can to the ‘live’ performance. Being able to analyse just how sounds are made and being able to see how much effort, energy and individualism accomplished musicians put into their performances is a truly inspirational thing.
Debbie, Notes From Last Night