Concert Review: All-Rameau Program

The suite from the Zais ballet displayed this composer's immense vitality, ranging from courtly solemnity to energetic liveliness.

Music good 88 (photo credit:)
Music good 88
(photo credit: )
All-Rameau Program Jerusalem Baroque Orchestra YMCA Auditorium February 20 Rameau's diversity of works - orchestral and vocal ballets, motet and harpsichord chamber music - was presented by the Jerusalem Baroque Orchestra last week and conducted by Andrew Parrot from England. A French contemporary of Bach and Handel, Rameau is less well-known and less frequently performed, though not less talented. Perhaps in Rameau's time, the French were less adept at public relations than their German and English counterparts. The suite from the Zais ballet displayed this composer's immense vitality, ranging from courtly solemnity and elegance to energetic liveliness. In Convertendo (Psalm 126), the "Grand Motet," was a superb example of Rameau's capacity for vocal inventiveness, choral and solo combinations. The work was performed impressively by the Adi Choir, whose sound was full, well rounded, perfectly consolidated and agreeably balanced. Yeela Avital's lovely soprano in this work and also in the vocal ballet Anacreon was clear and radiant. A softer, more caressing voice production in the higher register would have been more appropriate, however, in the role of Amor. As Anacreon, Christian Immler's bass was sonorous, warm and expressive. The outstanding dramatic qualities that made Rameau's operas such captivating masterpieces were already noticeable in this one-act-ballet. The harpsichord concert piece with flute and violin (David Shemer, Kimberly Reine, Noam Shuss) would have been more effective in a smaller hall of chamber music dimensions. Its delicate sounds were sadly lost in the too large auditorium.