Quirine Viersen (cello) & Combattimento Consort Amsterdam, Jan Willem de Vriend
John Keats once wrote that Haydn is like a child: you never know what he is going to do next. Haydn kept his playful character combined with an increasing depth in his music throughout his life and it makes him irresistible. Take the first movement of his Cello Concerto in C major: in the development section he plays a delightful game with the melodic theme and the thrumming rhythmic motive; the composer’s own enjoyment is palpable. Unexpected endings in the adagio and a finale which bursts with the joy of life and virtuoso acrobatics. The more lyrical Cello Concerto in D major also has passages that never cease to surprise: the lyrical entrance of the soloist is abruptly terminated with a sort of drum-roll. Such moments as these are splendid, for they leaven the musical brew and seem to bear Haydn’s personal stamp and signature. This second concerto has greater depth than the earlier concerto in C major, especially in the Adagio, giving clear proof of the composer’s later maturity. The music of Haydn’s Symphony no. 60 (six movements) was originally composed for the play entitled The Absent-minded Man, ‘Per la Commedia intitolata il Distratto’. It was with most likely only a few minor adaptations that Haydn transformed his distracted character into a figure for the symphonic stage. It is an enchanting work that has much more to offer the listener whenever the listener has a good conception of the play’s concert. Dutch cellist Quirine Viersen is one of the foremost musical personalities of the younger generation on the international music scene today. Her intense, powerful and virtuoso playing has thoroughly convinced her colleagues, the press and the public of her great musical talent and strength. The Combattimento Consort Amsterdam (founded by Jan Willem de Vriend in 1982) is a close-knit group of musicians that dares to realise the struggle between a line and its counterpoint. It is a baroque ensemble in which contradictions are employed in order to create beauty and whose contrasts lead to intense pleasure. It is an ensemble that creates a bridge between players and public with its fresh impertinence in matters musical.
Cello Concerto No. 1 in C major, Hob. VIIb:1
Cello Concerto No. 2 in D major, Hob. VIIb:2 (Op. 101)
Symphony No. 60 in C major 'Il distratto'
Quirine Viersen wordt in het buitenland beschouwd als ‘een van de belangrijkste vertegenwoordigers van de jongere generatie musici’. Hoe terecht dat is blijkt uit de zo’n tien jaar geleden opgenomen celloconcerten van Haydn. Natuurlijk beschikt ze over het aloude Combattimento Consort onder leiding van Jan Willem de Vriend, maar de wijze waarop Viersen de vrolijke speelsheid van Haydn etaleert is onovertroffen. De concerten klinken vanzelfsprekender dan ooit.