Dave Bremner will be a name familiar to many of you (NZSO), be it for his orchestral, solo or brass band playing par excellence. Arguably one of the busiest brass players in the southern hemisphere, Dave has found time to fit in a radio show entitled Brilliant Brass. It’s definitely worth a listen, featuring some outstanding playing from German Brass and Wynton Marsalis, finishing with an excerpt from one of my favourite brass band works, Philip Wilby’s Paganini Variations.
September has been a month I have been looking forward to with slight trepidation; it presents the ultimate challenge of balancing orchestral and solo paying. It started at the Montreux festival under Dutoit playing Stravinsky’s Le Sacre du printemps (just down the road from where it was written!), followed by Bartok’s amazing one-act opera Bluebeard’s Castle and finished with Ravel’s Bolero. Next week I will spend two days in Bern recording, amongst other things, Xenakis’s unaccompanied work Keren. I have been practicing this for a few months now and it is fair to say it has pushed me technically. Finding a balance between sound and flexibility, given the orchestral work, has not been easy and is far from over. The end of the month sees the RPO fly to Bucharest to perform Mahler’s Symphony No. 3. If truth be told, I have not dared look at this until I finish in the studio as i’m very wary of how it could affect the solo rep.
I hope you have a listen to Dave’s radio show, I certainly enjoyed it. Sorry neighbours, time for another dose of Xenakis!