THE university played host to seven musicians from the highly-regarded St Mary's Music School in Edinburgh in this lunchtime concert in the John McIntyre Hall.
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The five students were supported by two members of staff, Richard Beauchamp and Audrey Innes, who supplied strongly sympathetic piano accompaniment in two of the selected compositions.
Four out of five of those works came from the present century, the sole exception being the first piece in the programme, Wieniawnki's Polonaise Brillante, with Beauchamp accompanying violinist Vicky Fifield. Her first entry was a shade ragged, and occasional mishaps crept in, but did little to diminish the impact of an assured and confident performance.
Felix Tanner also perpetrated the odd fluff, but dealt with the rather dry, expressive demands and often vinegary tonality of Hindemith's Sonata for unaccompanied viola, Op 25, No 1, in very mature and concentrated fashion. Elspeth Wyllie
addressed three contrasting Preludes from Shostakovitch's Op 24 set in equally sure-fingered fashion. She was not only commendably accurate, but bold in her rhythmic attack on these vivid pieces.
They closed with two French pieces. Helen Grime and Audrey Innes gave a poised and highly-energised account of Poulenc's Sonata for oboe and piano, with the pianist supporting the young oboist in exemplary fashion, allowing her to settle to a shapely performance.
Elspeth Wyllie reappeared in the trio which played the final work, Milhaud's Suite, Op 157b, but on clarinet this time, with Vicky Fifield sticking to violin, and Mamiko Watanabe at the piano. They gave a lyrical and expressive account of this attractive piece, and dispatched the exuberant final movement with