Ensemble Recherche

In Schnee, by Hans Abrahamsen, two pianos are dampened with paper and the percussionist spends most of the time rhythmically rubbing on smooth and rough tables. The Freiburg-based Ensemble Recherche were giving the work its UK premiere, along with Murmurs, by Britain's Rebecca Saunders, composer in residence at this year's festival.

The concert was a quiet affair, somewhat inevitably, as both pieces privilege the contemplative and static over the assertive and dynamic. Schnee (meaning snow) explores the idea that our perception of nearly identical patterns causes the imagination to project new forms by itself ...

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