Authentic Hungarian sounds—from the cimbalom, the national folk instrument, to the sophistication of Liszt's fiery Rhapsody, and Brahms's majestic Piano Trio No. 2 in C Major. All reflect the cadences and rhythm of Hungarian speech. Bartok’s 1938 Contrasts for Clarinet, Violin and Piano, commissioned by jazz legend Benny Goodman, is an amalgam of abstracted Hungarian folk music combined with Romanian dance melodies. It’s a study in contrasts: the tone color of the three different instruments, different musical idioms and jazz and classical modes; and both violist and clarinetist require two instruments apiece to capture the dual character. The stage is set with a bravura performance on the folk hammered dulcimer (cimbalom) by Hungarian trained Cosmo Gorsci.
Erin Keefe, violin; Alexander Fiterstein, clarinet; Lydia Artymiw, piano; Yehuda Hanani, cello; Cosmo Gorcsi, cimbalom