FRIDAY 9 MAY 2014
While we have been privileged to have Daniel Herscovitch perform at Bowral before it was a pleasure to welcome him again; and again his considerable experience as teacher of piano and performer were evident. And there is no doubt that St Jude’s itself is a key part of such a performance; the church is a fitting setting for a wide range of performances, from ensembles, to small orchestras to organ to solo piano. Thus it was a delight to listen to Mr Herscovitch.
Again Mr Herscovitch gave us a brief introduction to the pieces he was playing. The first, Rapsodia Nusantara, was from Ananda Sukarlan, an Indonesian composer for whom this piece was written on the tenth anniversary of the events, as a memorial to the terrible bombing of Bali in 2002. As suggested by Mr Herscovitch it is fitting that such a memorial is dramatic, which indeed it surely is. The second work led us into the domain of a very familiar composer, Ludwig von Beethoven, the Sonata in E Flat major Po.81a. Composed in 1810, this work has three movements and surely reminded us of the sheer beauty and strength of his work. In the last year of his life, 1827, Franz Schubert composed the Impromptu in F Minor D. 935 which was familiar to at least one in the audience who conveyed to the writer that it was a favourite work. And indeed the presentation by Mr Herscovitch must have enhanced this view. The final work before a brief intermission was a Franz Liszt adaptation of part of Giuseppe Verdi’s Aida. The Danza sacra e duetto finale was composed by Liszt in 1879 and is an example of his, Liszt’s genuine readiness to propagate the works of others. The final work after the intermission was by Robert Schumann, Sonata in F sharp minor Op.11, composed in 1835, in four movements. It seems Schumann borrowed from then Clara Wieck, who subsequently became his wife, for the second movement, Aria (and she subsequently borrowed from him for some of her own compositions). This Sonata was an exuberant finish to a great performance.
We indeed were privileged to have Daniel Herscovitch again; it was a pleasure to listen to his accomplished performance with a piano which gave us great clarity of sound. It was just somewhat unfortunate that even though it was not so pleasant an evening more of the Southern Highlands people were not able to avail themselves of such a wonderful performance.