Yesterday’s lunchtime concert in the RBA featured mezzo Lauren Eberwin, soprano Danika Lorèn and pianists Hyejin Kwon and Stéphane Meyer. Lauren and Hyejin were first up with Schumann’s Frauenliebe und -leben. I’ve rarely seen this sung by a singer so obviously “in” the story. There was a real sense of first person storytelling as well as rather good singing. I thought Lauren sounded surprisingly sopranoish in the first seven numbers but they are optimistic and happy and a bright coloured voice seems apt. She certainly darkened it nicely for the final grim song. Hyejin was a most sympathetic partner.
Danika gave us Debussy’s Ariettes oubliées. It’s one of those impressionistic sets to texts by Verlaine. The vocal line is quite ethereal and the piano even more so. It was nicely done with Danika’s very clean upper register in evidence and some real delicacy from Stéphane on piano.
The most fun part of the concert though was a couple of Fauré duets. These two sound great together. No question who is the mezzo and who the soprano. Also they were obviously having great fun especially in the concluding Tarantelle where they traded antiphonal lines with energy and humour and ended up throwing their scores around. Terrific bravura playing from Stéphane here too, a marked contrast to the delicacy of the Debussy.