Heading to Mallorca

Tomorrow I’m performing a solo concert on the island of Mallorca. I’ll be playing works for viola da gamba by Telemann, Abel and Marais.

It’s always a challenge to play a solo concert and the culmination of many hours of work. I decided to organise a last minute try-out concert to help my preparations. But because it was SOOO last minute, all I could manage was to perform in our neighbourhood playground and invite the entire street. Surprisingly, it was a wonderful evening as you can see in the photo! Many people turned up and stayed for the whole hour 😁

Concerto Magazine Review

The March edition of the German early music magazine, concerto, carried several reviews of recent Telemann recordings. There were kind words for my Telemann Fantasias:

Smith betont die klassiche Noblesse der kompositionen under findet den dazu passenden eleganten Ton.

Smith emphasizes the classical nobility of the compositions and finds the appropriate elegant tone.

4 sterren in Trouw

Mooi recensie in Trouw op 8 december 2017:

https://www.trouw.nl/cultuur/cd-s-op-vrijdag-miguel-the-kik-eijlander-en-telemann~a957fdb9/

Smith is consciëntieus en paart zijn fijn uitgewerkte handvaardigheid aan een speelse toon, zo nu en dan zwiert hij over de snaren. Heel precies bepaalt hij de hoeveelheid licht die hij doorlaat in Telemanns muziek, maar het licht dát schijnt is altijd helder en kent rijke kleurschakeringen.

(Smith is conscientious and combines his finely worked-out craftsmanship with a playful tone, now and then gliding over the strings. He precisely determines the amount of light he allows into Telemann’s music, and the light that shines is always clear with rich shades of colour.)

Gramophone and BBC Reviews

Two great Telemann reviews in from Gramophone and BBC Music Magazine!

BBC gave a double 5-star review, for Performance and Recording!

Robert Smith is not the first in the field with his recording, but the expressive warmth … feeling for rhetoric and accomplished technique deserve to win many friends.

And Lindsay Kemp at Gramophone commented:

Smith navigates Telemann’s fleeting moods with assurance and focus – whether in the concentrated harmonies of a grave slow movement or in the sprightly dancelike release of an allegro finale – and finds tellingly timed rhetorical space between phrases.

Guillemain recording with Fantasticus

Fantasticus just finished recording their latest CD, Louis-Gabriel Guillemain’s Op.12 Quartets for Flute, Violin, Viola da gamba and harpsichord. We had the immense pleasure of working with the great Wilbert Hazelzet on traverso flute. The recording should appear sometime next year on Resonus Classics, so keep an eye on this space – or better still the Fantasticus facebook page: www.facebook.com/fantasticus.baroque/