Thursday, January 25, 2024

Mandolinist Avi Avital and pianist Omer Klein at Basel’s Martinskirche, 24 January 2024

In Basel's Martinskirche last night, mandolinist Avi Avital and pianist Omer Klein performed wonderful mandolin-piano duos. But in the middle of their set, Avital played unaccompanied mandolin arrangements of four movements of Johann Sebastian Bach's Partita in D minor for solo violin (he left out the Chaconne because it was "too long" for the duo concert), and between those movements Klein improvised three solo piano pieces. Avital's Bach performance was riveting (coincidentally, I'd listened to violinist Ingrid Matthews's recording of that Partita earlier in the day). And Klein's third solo was singular: with only his right hand, he improvised a winding single-note melody with only a few chords near the end. (Andrew Shields, #111Words, 25 January 2024)

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