Ida Haendel International Scholarship Fund Gala Concert

Sonata in D minor, Op.5/12 (La Folia)
Zigeunerweisen, Op.20
Carmen Fantasy, Op.25
Introduction and Rondo Capricioso, Op.28
Symphonie espagnole, Op.21 – Intermezzo

Ida Haendel (violin) & Olga Sitkovetsky (piano)

Polonaise in D, Op.4

Guro Kleven Hagen (violin) & Olga Sitkovetsky (piano)

Sonata in A minor for arpeggione and piano, D821 – First Movement

David Cohen (cello) & Olga Sitkovetsky (piano)

Concerto in B minor for 4 violins, Op.3/10

Ida Haendel, Anna-Liisa Bezrodny, Guro Kleven Hagen & Alexander Sitkovetsky (violins) & Razumovsky Academy Ensemble


Reviewed by: Kenneth Carter

Reviewed: 24 June, 2008
Venue: Wigmore Hall, London

Ida HaendelIda Haendel has now entered her 80s. Here she was appearing as Patron of the Razumovsky Academy and to instigate the Scholarship in her name.

For the second time in a month, an octogenarian has slid into the Wigmore Hall and demonstrated supreme musicianship. This was an occasion for celebrating Ida Haendel’s consummate artistry. Her playing has a quality which is, literally, beyond words – a quality whose rarity you can immediately sense, but cannot describe.

Haendel’s Corelli had warmth and poise. It was, in effect, a warm-up before the energetic virtuosity of the Sarasate gypsy selection and the shimmering elegance of the Saint-Saëns. After the interval, we heard the gallant display of Sarasate’s selection from Bizet’s “Carmen” and suave Lalo. Finally, Haendel joined the youngsters in the Vivaldi, as one soloist amongst four.

Guro Kleven Hagen (born 1994) astonished with her bravura and attack, in a brilliant account of Wieniawski’s Polonaise. Her skill was astounding. David Cohen gave a rumbustuous, rather jolly account of Schubert’s writing for the ungainly (now extinct) arpeggione.

The Vivaldi was a triumphant conclusion. The performance was celebratory. Four considerable artists were donating their skills to exhibiting this miniature from Venice in a resplendent light, through a participation which, surely, the youngsters will never forget.

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