“Take six superb solo musicians, add three infrequently performed works of diverse style and form, give the mix a gentle stir … and the result is playing of great dynamism, coherence and character”
Claire Seymour, Seen & Heard International
About the Project
Beethoven More or Less offers the complete set of Beethoven’s piano concerti performed across a series of chamber concerts. These much-loved works, transcribed for solo piano and string quintet by Vinzenz Lachner (1811-93) are set alongside arrangements of other Beethoven works, many of which had also been originally conceived for larger forces. A contemporary of Beethoven’s, Vinzenz Lachner was an eminent conductor and respected composer of his own time.
The project was conceived by Leon Bosch’s innovative chamber group, I Musicanti to promote the ensemble’s passionate belief in the power of chamber music. Historically, chamber arrangements of orchestral compositions were used to bring newly written music to a wider audience, just as we listen to recordings today. Beethoven’s music is now at the very heart of the classical tradition but there is still much to be gleaned from these arrangements: just as period instruments give us an idea of how music once sounded, these contemporary arrangements gives us an insight into the way music was created, learned, absorbed and enjoyed. Whether it’s an intimate festival appearance or an appearance in a great concert hall, this project presents a different perspective on Beethoven, offering something new and exciting that works for all audiences and venues.
The shape and size of the project is flexible and always tailor-made for the occasion, whether a single concert offering or a mini-residency featuring the complete piano concerti. The full, three-concert version of the project is noted below, and this can also be adapted to suit other formats, such as lunchtime concerts, or late-night events where contrasting chamber repertoire is offered alongside a piano concerto. For full information on programming options, please get in touch.
Beethoven More or Less: Complete version (3 full-length concerts)
Piano Concerto No.5 Op.73 in E-flat major ‘Emperor’
Instrumentation: solo piano, 2 violins, viola, cello & double bass
About the Artists
Martin Roscoe: During an illustrious career, Martin Roscoe has become one of the UK’s most loved and respected pianists. With his extensive repertoire, consummate musicianship and immediate connection with audiences, he is in great demand as a concerto soloist, chamber musician and recitalist. Martin appears regularly at Wigmore Hall and has long-standing associations with many of the UK’s leading orchestras such as the BBC Philharmonic and BBC Scottish Symphony. A prolific recording artist, Martin has a distinguished discography and is one of the most broadcast pianists on BBC radio.
Leon Bosch & I Musicanti: A mixed instrument chamber ensemble, I Musicanti comprises some of the most experienced and respected musicians to be found in the UK, handpicked by the group’s founder and artistic director, the international double bass virtuoso and conductor Leon Bosch. Under Bosch’s direction, I Musicanti comes together to present distinctive programmes with a particular emphasis on music that has been lost and found, or simply overlooked: great works by unknown composers and unknown works by great composers. Many of the ensemble’s projects are the result of Leon Bosch’s vivid curiosity and commitment, something for which he is well known as a double bassist. The ensemble also provides a vehicle for its members to pursue their own artistic projects: all musicians of I Musicanti are soloists in their own right, and the group also collaborates with international performers of the highest calibre. I Musicanti’s eye-catching programmes and quality of performance are of unique appeal to both festivals and concert halls. www.imusicanti.co.uk
“As well as his obvious mastery of his instrument, Leon Bosch has a genius for bringing together an eclectic group of people around an eclectic programme”
– Ruth Hansford, Planet Hugill
“Perhaps the most significant facet of the success of the I Musicanti formula is the selection of musicians. The ensemble is flexible – sometimes a quartet, sometimes at septet, depending on the repertoire… This is not flashy, ego-driven playing, but really exceptional playing driven by common purpose and a shared love of the music.”