low notes 298.88.
(photo credit: Uwe Seyl)
The husband and wife team of bassoonist Friedrich Edelmann and cellist Rebecca Rust are in Israel for two weeks to perform, teach and share their love of music.
Rust, whose grandparents (originally Rotblatt) went from Lithuania to California, met her German husband at a Jeunesses Musicales Youth Orchestra session 30 years ago. Since then they have made their home outside Munich, where Edelmann played in the Munich Philharmonic for 30 years.
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Although the repertoire for bassoon and cello is relatively small, many composers have written for this talented team.
During their visit, they will be staying with the Japanese ambassador to Israel, S. E. Yoshinori Katori, who was once the consul-general in Munich. Rust and Edelmann knew him there and often played in his home. They will be performing twice in his Herzliya home this week. The couple has been to Japan many times, and Edelmann played a private concert in honor of the marriage of the crown prince of Japan in 1993.
Rust has made regular tours to Japan, with concerts in Tokyo, Nagoya, Sapporo, Kobe, Sendai, Mito, Hiroshima, Miyako (Okinawa), and in the Imperial Palace in Tokyo, including appearances as soloist with the Tokyo Symphony. She plays a beautiful old cello made by William Forster (1791) that was once owned by Prince Charles. Among her recordings is Japanese Favorites for Violoncello.
Japan is represented in their choice of repertoire for the Israel concerts by three Japanese songs for cello and bassoon, the slow movement from "Japanese-German Seasons" of Karl Michael Komma (b. 1913) for cello and bassoon, and the Japanese "Song for Cello and Piano" by Rentaro Taki (1879-1903). Noted Israeli pianist Zecharia Plavin will be performing with the duo.
One of the many interesting stories they told me during a recent phone interview had to do with two relatively unknown German-Jewish composers whose works they will be performing, Hans G l (1890-1987) and Robert Kahn (1865-1951). Kahn was a student and friend of Johannes Brahms, and G l was co-editor of Brahms's complete works and director of the music conservatory in Mainz from 1929 until 1933.
Both Gal and Kahn fled Germany after the Nazis came to power, and although their compositions have been almost entirely forgotten since World War II, they are slowly being rediscovered by musicians and audiences, as was the case with many other composers of "degenerate" music who were persecuted by the Nazis. The Divertimento for Bassoon and Cello by G l in three movements and the Sonata for Cello and Piano by Kahn are beautiful, somewhat virtuosic works in the disciplined manner of Brahms.
Tomorrow evening they will be playing at the home of well-known cellist Dudu Sella in Kochav Yair. Monday morning Edelmann will be offering a bassoon master class at the Israel Conservatory. Next week the couple will be performing with Plavin at the Felicja Blumental Center (Saturday, February 10 at 8:30). Following that, they will be doing an unusual tour, performing at retirement residences: Nordiya near Netanya on February 12; Hod Beth Moses on February 13; Hod Jerusalem on February 14; and concluding with a concert at the Arad Conservatory on February 15.
For further information, call (03) 620-1185 or (08) 997-9371.