Art And Culture

Breathtaking Duet of Clarinet, Piano at Fajr Music Festival

Breathtaking Duet of Clarinet, Piano at Fajr Music Festival
Breathtaking Duet of Clarinet, Piano at Fajr Music Festival

The second day of the Fajr International Music festival saw a superb performance of piano and bass clarinet by Italian and Austrian musicians.

The duet, performed Saturday night, in the international section of the festival at Tehran’s Rudaki Hall, had the audience mesmerized for the high quality musical by the two virtuosos, IRNA reports.

The two-part rendition by the famous Italian pianist Stefano Battaglia and the renowned Austrian clarinet player Ulrich Drechsler saw music fans fill the hall leaving no vacant seats.

The musicians were brilliant showing great skills in their repertoire which was rooted in the music of Eastern Europe, the Middle East, and parts northern Europe.

The high-quality acoustics of the hall helped with the techniques of the professional ensemble as the two musicians performed in perfect sync. The flawless performance indicated they were in perfect harmony and coordination. The repertoire chosen for the concert was just right for the Iranian palate, suggesting their experience and knowledge of holding international concerts.

In an interview with the news center of the festival, Drechsler said the selected repertoire for the performance has been influenced by all the people who encouraged and inspired him in life, so “generally, it can be said that all the pieces are about love.”

On the cooperation with Battaglia, he said, “I have listened to his music for years and like it as the origin of his music is very similar to that of mine. The base of our work is classical music and we both use Scandinavian and Eastern elements in our pieces.”

Drechsler also noted that he has got familiar with Iranian traditional music through works of Kayhan Kalhor, the famous Kamancheh (knee fiddle) player, and is a big fan of his works. He believes that music in Iran comes from the heart of the players so the factor of emotion “is so prominent in it.” Coming for the second time to Iran, he said, “I like Iranians for their kindness, politeness, and hospitality.”

 Award Winners

Born in Milan, Stefano Battaglia’s classical career includes several Italian and European festivals, as well as hundreds of concerts as a soloist. In the jazz scene he was awarded as best new talent of 1988 and 1999 best Italian musician by the magazine Musica Jazz.

He has played in more than 3000 concerts as an improviser in all the most important festivals and in many international appointments all over the world. Recording more than 100 CDs (mostly as a leader and ten for solo piano), he has received many awards for his solo piano and trio recordings.

Ulrich Drechsler lives in Vienna and is a freelance composer and musician. The bass clarinet is his main instrument.

The Ulrich Drechsler Quartet, founded in 2005, was his debut as a band leader. With this group, Drechsler presented his original compositions for the very first time.

Since then he has played in a number of different bands. He has also been holding concert tours for many years and been awarded in various festivals. In the past years he established himself as one of the most ambiguous and unpredictable musicians in Europe and one of the leading jazz bass clarinet players with an absolute unique music approach.

The 30th edition of the Fajr festival has various sections including the main competition, out of competition, women’s, children and new talents, other generation, regions, and international. It opened on February 13 and will conclude on February 20.