Concert Review: New chamber music venue

Duos and Trios, Nataf, January 26.

Chamber music 521 (photo credit: Dan Porges)
Chamber music 521
(photo credit: Dan Porges)
A new chamber music series has been launched in Nataf, a village in the Judean Hills, at pianist Revital Hachamoff’s home, which contains a small concert hall, creating a quasi-intimate ambience.
The dry, non-reverberating acoustics take some getting used to before one can settle down to enjoy the music.
Of special interest at this recent concert was the Romance for Piano and Cello by Clara Wieck-Schumann, Robert’s too often overlooked composer-wife whose works are only seldom performed. What is amazing about the piece is its independence of style and lack or influence from her husband.
Her music is intimate, almost introverted yet intense, quite a far cry from Robert’s more demanding and energetic piano works.
In Mozart’s Kegelstadt Trio for Clarinet, Piano and Cello, substituting for the original viola, and Brahms’s Clarinet Trio, Yevgeny Yehudin, Hachamoff and Zvi Plesser displayed remarkable mutual attentiveness, blending in harmoniously with each other, achieving perfect balance and an inspired, impassioned performance.
That is more than can be said about Brahms’s Cello and Piano Sonata op. 38. The absence of a third, equilibrating instrument drove the piano to assume a domineering role, dwarfing the more modest and delicate cello.
Getting away to the countryside to enjoy a calming, friendly musical environment is what this new concert venue is all about.