April 8, 2013 |

Zuckerman ChamberPlayers Debut Locally

The world-famous Zuckerman ChamberPlayers, led by violin legend Pinchas Zukerman, made their Los Angeles debut at The Broad Stage in Santa Monica for a two-night engagement last weekend.

Zukerman, an Israeli native who’s been one of the world’s leading violin soloists and a respected international conductor for almost half a century, has gathered together four of the world’s most promising young performers to serve as his protégés and perform alongside him.

They are violinist Jessica Linnebach, violist Jethro Marks, cellist Amanda Forsyth, and pianist Angela Chang, former Gold Medalist of the Arthur Rubinstein International Piano Masters Competition.

Linnebach, associate concertmaster, Marks, principal violist, and Forsyth, principal cellist, are also members of the National Arts Centre Orchestra in Ottawa, Ontario, of which Zukerman is the music director.

The ChamberPlayers played two completely different programs: Friday’s concert featured the music of Brahms and Mozart, and Saturday, which I attended, featured music of Mozart, Kodaly, and Schumann.

For the opening piece, Linnebach and Marks superbly played Mozart’s Duo for Violin & Viola No. 1 in G major, K. 423. They played all three movements as if angels were singing to each other.

Then, Zukerman and Forsyth took the stage to play Kodaly’s Duo for Violin and Cello, Op.7, also having three movements. The music they made seared with virtuosity, color, and an expressive power that seemed otherworldly.

Finally, the audience was treated to the entire ChamberPlayer team which played Schumann’s Piano Quintet in E-Flat major, Op. 44, his most famous chamber music work which succeeds wildly as a concert closer. In the climax, the ChamberPlayers raised this music to a new level of ultimate majesty.

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