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Klarinet Archive - Posting 000282.txt from 2000/09

Subj: [kl] David Niethamer's Recital
Date: Fri, 8 Sep 2000 17:17:11 -0400

On September 6, David Niethamer performed in recital at the University of
Richmond's Camp Concert Hall. In terms of technical skill, beauty of sound
and, most importantly, bringing the music to life, Niethamer has never
sounded better.

Although it was Niethamer's recital, he shared the spotlight with the
highly-regarded composer, Allan Blank. Blank now lives in Richmond and was
present for the performance. His Three for Two (composed in 1999 for
clarinet and piano), was the most successful performance of the evening. It
is worth looking into for musicians who are looking for fresh music of
substance. Cast in three movements, Three for Two is tonal and lyrical in
nature. As in most of Blank's music, rhythmic vitality is a hallmark. The
first movement, "A Giddy Twosome," features a playful discourse between the
instruments. The second movement, wandering in a moody, evocative, slow
legato beautifully rendered by Niethamer, is aptly titled, "The Solitude of
Self." The final movement, "Projecting the Self," is more exuberant than the
first and even more demanding on the performers. The music sounds tonal, but
fresh and modern in the numerous playful, high-velocity runs. Extremes of
register and dynamics are found throughout the music. The first and third
movement make major demands in terms of articulation, while the second
movement, demands control of all registers at a piano volume. This is a
piece well worth looking into for a performer looking for music that appeals
on both the intellectual and visceral levels.

Albert Hunt

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