Windsync opens Matinee Musicale Cincinnati Season

WindSync can deliver one of the most pleasing sounds between heaven and earth. Its five members are Garrett Hudson, flute and piccolo; Emily Tsai, oboe and English horn; Elias Rodriguez, clarinet; Kara LaMoure, bassoon; Anni Hochhalter, French horn. They play many idoms authoritatively, elegantly, with adroit technique, and with great fun.

They opened the Matinee Musicale Cincinnati 2021-2022 series with a compelling recital tht began with a selection of Bagatelles of György Ligeti, a collection that manages to make dissonance agreeable at times, humorous at others, incorporating Hungarian folk rhythms and melodies and occasional and well-planned cacophony.

A lovely arrangement for winds of Beethoven’s String Quartet No. 4 in E flat major led to a brief intermission, after which the five players returned to the Memorial Hall stage to feature their own arrangement of Ravel’s Bolero. They took turns at the snare drum, sustaining the constant rhythmic pattern that underpins Ravel’s composition while returning on and off to their instruments. The  tour de force earned them a well-deserved applause.

They followed Ravel’s Bolero with Valerie Coleman’s Portraits of Josephine, a jazzy and bluesy homage to the American chanteuse Josephine Baker.

Turkish composer’s Eberh Eyilmaz’s Raki Havasi is a colorful work commissioned by WindSync which brought the afternoon to a raucous close with its driving rhythm and Near-Eastern sound.

A few though not enough composers have been writing for the woodwind quintet. Nielsen, Villa-Lobos, Milhaud, Hindemith, and Barber, among some others wrote for the wind quintet, and yet arts organizations are shy about scheduling recitals by wind quintets which is all to their loss and that of their audiences.

All the more power to Matinee Musicale Cincinnati, which ever adventurous in its programming has opened with splendid results its 2021-202 recital series with WindSync

Listen to Windsync playing Jupiter from Gustav Holst’s The Planets: