© Harald Hoffmann
© Harald Hoffmann

Arcis Saxophone Quartet meets Duo Gromes-Riem

The French American Connection

12. - 21.01.2018, 17. - 31.08.2018
Arcis Saxophone Quartet meets Duo Raphaela Gromes- Julian Riem

The French-American Connection

 

Camille Saint-Saens: Cello Concert a minor (saxophone quartet and cello)
George Gershwin: Rhapsody in Blue (saxophone quartet and piano)
Francis Poulenc: Trio op. 43 (piano, cello and sopran saxophone)
George Gershwin: An American in Paris – Suite (quartet and duo)
Maurice Ravel: Rapsodie espagnole (quartet and duo)

„Ich kann dir nichts mehr beibringen.“ - George Gershwin, die schillernde Figur der amerikanischen Musikwelt, muss sich wohl sehr geschmeichelt gefühlt haben, als Nadia Boulanger sein Unterrichtsgesuch mit diesen Worten ablehnte.
Boulanger war die wichtigste Kompositionslehrerin des 20. Jahrhunderts, in ihrem Wohnzimmer, der „Boulangerie “, gingen alle wichtigen Komponisten dieser Zeit ein und aus und sie war als Leiterin des Conservatoire Américain in Paris das Bindeglied der „french-american connection“ – der alten europäischen Musiktradition und der damals ganz neuen amerikanischen Ästhetik.

Jene „french-american connection“ ist die Grundlage dieses außergewöhnlichen Konzertprogramms:

Zu Beginn steht Saint-Saens’ virtuoses und mitreissendes Cellokonzert, das noch tief in der Romantik verwurzelt ist. Auf die Suche nach neuen Klangwelten begibt sich Ravel in seiner Rapsodie Espagnole und schreibt ein Werk voller Kontraste – von folkloristischen Tänzen bis hin zu tiefen Abgründen. Den Gegenpart zu diesem impressionistischen Feuerwerk bildet Poulencs Trio, der als Mitglied der „Groupe des Six“ klare Formen und Einfachheit bevorzugte und mit Ironie der tiefschürfenden Musik der Romantik begegnete.
Und nun kommt Gershwin nach Paris und bringt das Unerhörte: die flirrenden Sounds der New Yorker Clubs verbinden sich mit dem Pariser Großstadt-Charme, die amerikanische Jazzmusik verschmilzt mit den großen spätromantischen Orchesterklängen.

Doch weit gefehlt, wer denkt, dass es für diesen Rausch an Klangfarben ein 100-Mann-Orchester braucht! Das Duo Gromes-Riem und das Arcis Saxophon Quartett bringen in den unterschiedlichsten Kombinationen vom Trio bis zum Sextett diese Musik in den feinsten Nuancen kammermusikalischer Subtilität bis hin zur schwelgenden Klangfülle eines Symphonieorchesters zu Gehör.

Raphaela Gromes, violoncello

Raphaela Gromes is one of the most aspiring young cellists and has captivated the musical world at her concerts with Kent Nagano at the Munich Opera Festival, Audi Sommerkonzerte Ingolstadt as well as the Edinburgh International Festival.

In 2017 Sony Classical releases her first CD together with pianist Julian Riem performing works by Giuseppe Martucci, Leone Sinigaglia, Ferrucio Busoni and Mario Castelnuovo.

In addition to her career as soloist she is also devoted to chamber music. Her chamber music partners are Christian Altenburger, Isabelle von Keulen, Alexander Lubimov, Patrick Demenga and Mischa Maisky among others.

Raphaela Gromes received her first cello lessons at the age of four. Winner of several competitions, she was a junior student of Peter Bruns at the University of Music and Theatre Felix Mendelssohn Bartholdy Leipzig and graduated at the Hochschule für Musik und Theater in München in the class of Wen-Sinn Yang with distinction. Since 2015 she is completing her studies at the Universität für Musik und darstellende Kunst in Vienna with Reinhard Latzko.

She took master classes with like Yo-Yo Ma, Natalia Gutman, Anner Bylsma, David Geringas among others.

Julian Riem, piano

Julian Riem studied with Michael Schäfer at the Hochschule für Musik und Theater in Munich and with Michel Béroff at the Conservatoire National Supérieur in Paris. He continued his studies with Rudolf Buchbinder at the Basel Music Academy, where he received a degree in solo performance with high honors. He is the winner of international piano competitions in Modena, Madrid and “Premio Gui” in Florence and was awarded a scholarship at the national German Music Competition.

As soloist, chamber musician and Lied accompanist he appeared at Klavierfestival Liszt-en-Provence, Musica mundi Brussels, Rolf Liebermann Podium Hamburg, Les Muséiques in Basel, Münchner Biennale, Munich Opera Festival, Rheingau Musik Festival, Festspiele Mecklenburg-Vorpommern, Richard Strauss Festival Garmisch, Barge Music, New York among others. His chamber music partners are Raphaela Gromes, Velit Quartet and Münchner Horntrio. In addition Julian Riem has performed with the Sinfonieorchester Basel, Württembergischen Kammerorchester Heilbronn and Münchner Kammerorchester.

In addition to his commitment to the standard classical music repertory, Julian Riem champions the works of contemporary composers as Messiaen, Ligeti, Stockhausen, Henze, Boulez, Xenakis, Schnittke, Hartmann, Liebermann, Stahmer, Borboudakis, Illes and Koch.

His recording with the Munich Horn Trio of works by Brahms, Ligeti and Koechlin won a prestigious ECHO Klassik award 2012 in the category "Best Chamber Music Recording".

Press

  • New CD: J.S. Bach/George Gershwin/Franco Donatoni

    The ensemble sound is surprisingly homogenous and alto saxophonist Ricarda Fuss and soprano saxophonist Claus Hierluksch succeed in adding soft sound colors and dosing the overtone content. While the four spectacular facets of their expression can be seen in Gershwin's sparkling suite, they point out a haunting stream especially in the middle part with an Andante in almost impressionistic sound colors.

    MDR Kultur, Jan Kubon und Michael Kuhlmann, 26.06.2017

    The fact that the four musicians of the Arcis Saxophon Quartet master their instruments is understandable. But it is more powerful that they use these skills innovatively.(…) Clarity in the arrangement and tonal perfection with immaculate approach are the means of the Arcis Quartet on their new album. Bach's melodic stringency and the compellingly flowing variation fill the four saxophones with almost casual elegance, without losing even a second of tension.(…) In the Arcis interpretation of Gershwin's "Porgy And Bess" suite, the dizzying technical brilliance prevails. A ballet on the musical high rope, grounded by the baritone parts of Jure Knez.

    Spiegel Online, Werner Theurich, 23.04.2017

  • Arcis Saxophone Quartet in Munich

    A young ensemble with such infectious enthusiasm the audience cannot neglect – not to mention the perfect technique. Those who heard the group will come back.(...) An explosion of temperament with  rhythm and color. (...) Their gripping musicianship is evidently the decisive factor in their way of dealing with music.

    TZ München, Beate Kayser, 04.03.2016