If I’d known Turramurra Uniting Church was such a popular venue I would have arrived a little earlier to see pianist Kathryn Selby play with two talented Finnish musicians: Vesa-Matti Leppänen on violin and Timo-Veikko Valve on cello. There was a big crowd so we had a somewhat limited view at the back, which was a shame as I really enjoy watching musicians play up close, but we could still fully appreciate the wonderful sound.
I found Grieg’s Andante con moto moody and dark, which made a nice contrast to the beautiful melodies and jaunty final movement of Mendelssohn’s Piano Trio No.2 in C minor. After a short interval (during which we burnt our tongues trying to drink our coffee in time) we heard Brahm’s Piano Trio in B major, which reminded me of Disney’s Fantasia with its opening movement, and ended with an impressively dramatic finale.
The atmosphere was friendly rather than serious, which I hadn’t expected from a chamber music concert in a church. The introductions to each piece were humorous, which lightened the mood, and the crowd appeared to be full of regulars chatting away and voting on dates for next year’s concerts. It seemed like a very nice community to be part of. Being more used to rock concerts, I still find the code of silence between movements strange, especially when the musicians have put on such a passionate and energetic performance. But there was a wolf whistle at the end, which I thought was a nice show of appreciation!
All in all, it was a very enjoyable journey through a whole range of moods, from soothing to dramatic, and the frequent changes made it very entertaining. A lovely way to spend a Sunday afternoon.