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The Phoenix Quartet's recital at the 'Romanian Youth' Center

Friday, 8 April 2011 , ora 11.34
The Phoenix string quartet from Lviv, Ukraine, was in the centre of attention, at the recital hosted on Thursday, April 7th 2011, by the National Arts Center 'Romanian Youth'. The four members of the ensemble - the violinists Mykola Havyuk, Petro Titeev, the violist Ustim Juk, and the cellist Denys Lytvynenko - are the graduates of the National Academy of Music Mykola Lysenko from Lviv and have a rich concert experience, in both chamber and soloist concerts, having been awarded important prizes in their home country, but also in Belarus, Slovakia, Poland.

A well-rounded ensemble, a natural performance

The musicians have probably played for a long time together, because at the recital held yesterday at the enterprise of the Ukrainian Embassy in Romania, they evolved as a well-rounded group, with a solid repertoire. The musical soirée began with a classical opus, Beethoven's Quartet No. 4 in C minor, homogenously interpreted, clean from a stylistic point of view, still, with slight intonation problems, but they were, however, not troublesome on the whole. We could listen then to a reduction of the well-known Simple Symphony by Benjamin Britten, during which the Ukrainian instrumentalists felt more in their own element, they gained naturalness and a vivid sound, expressive, giving the impression that they live with intensity the music they transmit to the public.

Good music with multiple inspiration sources

In a more relaxed atmosphere, the Phoenix quartet had a comeback in the second part, with a completely different program, rather in the style of a Café Concert, which contained film music, even sonorities of the rock band Deep Purple, in an adaptation, of course, for a string quartet and adaptations of Ukrainian and Romanian folkloric works (I recognized, for example, Ciocârlia or the carol Shchedryk). The artists also presented the work of a contemporary composer that is famous in his country, Myroslav Skoryk, in whose music elements of Ukrainian and American folklore can be found.

It was, thus, an interesting recital, an event that had as guests His Excellency, the ambassador Markian Kulyk, diplomats, representatives of the Ministry of Culture and National Patrimony and of the National Arts Center Romanian Youth, music lovers, forming an enthusiastic audience, which applauded the performance of the Phoenix Quartet.

Larisa Clempuº
Translated by Izabella Feher and Laura Bosnea
MTTLC, Bucharest University