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1Oct/12Off

The ARC Ensemble in Germany, September 2012

Villa Seligman

The ARC Ensemble must take the credit for the impressive effect in this concert. Exceptionally controlled, but always full of intensity and emotion, the musicians handled the elegiac passages of the final variation movement with the same sovereign accomplishment as the dense intensity of the first and middle movements, in particular the clarinetist Joaquin Valdepeñas, with his controlled and beautiful ensemble playing.

– Florian Zeugner, Esslinger Zeitung

The performance of [Ben-Haim's] 1941 Clarinet Quintet op. 31a was much more than a expression of respect for music ostracized by Nazi Germany: the ARC Ensemble presented chamber music that was a discovery –– and raised the question of why it is so rarely finds its way to the concert platform [...]
There is the "Hebrew Fantasy" by Samuel Gardner (1891-1984): a fascinating wealth of heartrending melodies and whimsical folklore that make you want to cry and dance at the same time! Or maybe Mieczysław Weinberg's Piano Quintet op. 18, written in Moscow. Here and there one notices similarities to Shostakovich, but to speak of him as an epigone would be more than negligent. The manner in which the ARC Ensemble presented this musical web of insistent, archaic rhythms, distinctive colours and ironic, upside-down dance-melodies was astonishing.

– Günter Helms, Hannoversche Allgemeine Zeitung

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