Sunday, January 24, 2010

Sources - Mandolin artists Alon Sariel and Jacob Reuven's new disc of European music

Background music? Most definitely not! “Sources”, a new disc of music performed on mandolin and mandola by Israeli artists Jacob Reuven and Alon Sariel, recorded at the Jerusalem Music Centre October 2009, will involve the listener from beginning to end and on various levels. The two artists, equally at home in both oriental- and western music, have chosen to play European works of three centuries, none originally written for plucked instruments. Take, for example, J.S.Bach’s Two-Part Inventions, five of which are performed here, pleasing in their individual entities and in the differences between them, are certainly not a far cry from how they would sound on harpsichord or clavichord.

French composer, violinist and dancer Jean-Marie Leclair’s (1697-1764) violin music, a paradigm of clarity, balance, harmony and good taste, makes for delightful listening in his Sonata no.1 in G major. Influenced by Italian style but clothed in French elegance, Reuven and Sariel contrast texture and timbre, presenting the lilting middle movement in a caressing, singing fashion placed between the energetic, joyful outer movements. Moving further into the Classical style, the artists play a Sonata by prolific French composer and pedagogue Michel Corette (1707-1795), one of whose instructional books was on mandolin technique. The performance of Corette’s sonata abounds in touching, delicate melodies and fine solo playing, with the final Presto intense and exciting.

For lovers of recorder repertoire familiar with G.Ph.Telemann’s Canonic Sonatas, do take the time to listen to Canonic Sonata no.1 in G major on this disc. Articulate, joyful and vivacious, Reuven and Sariel give its imitation youthful freshness with a smattering of ornamentation. The pensive Adagio movement is handled with fragility.

One of the most distinguished violinists and teachers of the Belgian school, Charles Auguste de Beriot (1802-1870) composed much music for the violin. His Twelve Easy Duos for Two Violins opus 87 (c.1845) can be heard on this disc. Reuven and Sariel’s reading of them is well crafted, emphasizing their singing quality, their small tonal contrasts, their Classical naivete, understatement and charm. Add to this dance-like rhythms and moments of bravura with tremolo replacing violin vibrato and you get a collection of tasty morsels.

Norwegian violinist, conductor and composer Johan Halvorsen (1864-1935) arranged the Passacaglia from G,F.Handel’s Harpsichord Suite no. 7 in G minor, scoring it for violin and viola. A highly demanding work, Reuven and Sariel’s virtuosic playing of it takes the variations through a gamut of emotions, textures and dynamics to create a brilliant performance.

Bela Bartok (1881-1945) wrote his Forty Four Duos for Two Violins” in 1932 for pedagogical purposes. Reuven and Sariel play 12 of these miniatures on the disc, most of them authentic folk tunes of a variety of ethnic origins. A celebration of complex folk rhythms and modes, feisty dissonances and bi-tonality, the artists wholeheartedly create a number of richly colored canvases, providing the best of entertainment and enjoyment to the listener. A disc of interest and artistic depth.

Monday, January 18, 2010

The Israel Camerata Jerusalem in the hands of The New Generation

The Israel Camerata Jerusalem presented “The New Generation”, an especially interesting concert in its Instrumental Plus Series at the Henry Crown Hall of the Jerusalem Theatre January 11th 2010. Conductor was Yoel Gamzou, with solo violinist Min-Jin Kym and Marianne Eva Lecler (harp).

American-Israeli conductor Yoel H. Gamzou (b.1981, USA) received his musical education at the Catherine Lewis Conservatory (Tel Aviv) and Tel Aviv University, going on to study in New York, Paris and Milan, distinguishing himself as a Mahler specialist. He directs the International Mahler Orchestra (London), which he founded. Gustav Mahler’s (1860-1911) Adagietto for strings and harp, the fourth of five movements from Symphony no.5 in C sharp minor, is frequently performed as a separate piece. Composed in 1902, the piece may have been sent to Mahler’s future wife, Alma, as a gesture of love. Gamzou, conducting without a baton, gave it a lush, fragile reading, his pianissimi breathtaking in their control and beauty. Floating the sound, Gamzou takes leave of the bar-line to weave the emotional intensity into uninterrupted melodic lines. French harp player Marianne Eva Lecler, a member of the IMO, added sparkle to the performance.

Russian pianist, conductor and composer Anton Arensky’s (1861-1906) Variations on a Theme of Tchaikovsky for String Orchestra, opus 35a, began as the slow movement of his String Quartet no.2 opus 35 (1894.) Tchaikovsky died in 1893; his lyrical style of writing had been a strong influence on Arensky’s composition and the movement was dedicated to his mentor’s memory. The variation theme comes from Tchaikovsky’s children’s song “A Legend”. Arensky transcribed the movement for string orchestra in 1894. Gamzou, attentive to the most delicate details of voicing and expression changes, weaves the piece from many singing, fluid melodic strands, sweeping his audience from one variation into the next. He achieves an unusually pure quality of string sound.

W.A.Mozart’s Concerto no. 2 for Violin and Orchestra K211, one of five composed between April and December of 1775, at a time the 19-year-old composer was concertmaster of the Archbishop’s court orchestra in Salzburg. Mozart, himself, was a brilliant violinist and it is supposed he would have played the solo role. Korean-born violinist Min-Jin Kim (b.1978), a performer with a busy international schedule, gave a well thought-out reading of this work. In keeping with the work’s late Baroque references, she integrated her solo sections sympathetically into the orchestral ensemble, never tempted to take on a showy approach for this non-dramatic piece. Her emphasis lay in presenting Mozart’s myriad of melodies, some of them suggesting folk dances. In the Andante movement, balance, strategic pacing and a sense of well-being pervaded. Min-Jin Kim’s performance was polished, secure and intelligent. Her collaboration with Gamzou produced a Mozart performance of superbly good taste.

The concert ended with Carl Maria von Weber’s (1786-1826) Symphony no. 1 in C major, opus 19 (1806-1807). This symphony and his second, which followed soon after (Weber composed only two symphonies) were written when Weber was in the employ of Duke Eugen Friedrich Heinrich von Wurttemberg. It seems there were no clarinets at his disposal, an instrument so prominent in so many of the composer’s other works, but it is known that the duke himself played the oboe. Gamzou introduces the opening movement – Allegro con fuoco – with a burst of energy. Constructed of varied, short ideas, each of them is addressed by the conductor, each solo sounding in turn. The orchestra’s playing abounded with beautifully shaped phrases and charm. Gamzou reads a score through his senses, as a sound painter, whose orchestral palette offers many colors and dynamic choices. His conducting language is detailed and energetic. His music-making is refreshing and communicative. The New Generation has much to say. Let’s hear more!

Saturday, January 16, 2010

The Jerusalem Symphony Orchestra plays an all-Schubert program

Concert no. 7 of the Jerusalem Symphony Orchestra’s Classical Series January 6th 2010at the Henry Crown Auditorium of the Jerusalem Theatre was devoted to works by Franz Schubert. Conductor was Maestro Leon Botstein, the JSO’s musical director, with soloists soprano Sharon Rostorf-Zamir and pianist Bishara Haroni.

The program opened with Franz Schubert’s (1797-1828) Rosamunde Overture, D.644 (1820). Never actually performed at the two only performances of “Rosamunde, Princess of Cyprus”, for which Schubert wrote the incidental music to Helmina von Chezy’s ill-fated third–rate play, the overture has survived as one of Schubert’s loveliest orchestral pieces. The JSO’s performance of it was warm-hearted and joyful, its contrasts and lush woodwind playing delighting the audience.

Of great interest were five Schubert Lieder with the piano parts arranged for orchestra. In his program notes, Maestro Botstein mentions “how much music adapts to different formats”… making “it speak in new ways to new audiences”. With the newly improved piano mechanism, Schubert was inspired to write piano parts to Lieder of unprecedented intensity and great difficulty, the dramatic results of which never cease to amaze and excite the listener. With some of the piano parts (I hesitate to call them “accompaniments”) sounding decidedly orchestral, the concept of orchestrating them was a logical one, actually beginning with Franz Schubert’s brother Ferdinand Schubert (1794-1859) orchestrating Erlkonig (The Earl King) in 1828. The orchestrated Lied meant more public performances (rather than those of the intimate “salon”), with the songs being performed by professional singers with heavier, more operatic voices. Some of the arrangements were actually commissioned by the singers themselves, wishing to perform Schubert Lieder at orchestral concerts and to larger audiences.

In this JSO concert, we heard the songs performed by Israeli-born soprano Sharon Rostorf-Zamir, a singer who performs widely, her repertoire covering opera, Baroque- to contemporary works. In “Standchen”(Serenade) (words: Ludwig Rellstab), orchestrated by the Austrian conductor and composer Felix Mottl (1856-1911), light, lyrical instrumental textures imitated the lilting “plucked’ accompaniment, the harp adding touches of silvery gloss; there was a happy balance of voice and orchestra, not always evident in some of the other songs. Orchestrated by Max Reger, we heard “An die Musik” (To Music) to words by Franz von Schober, with elegant use of woodwinds gracing the small imitations. Rostorf-Zamir’s performance of “Gretchen am Spinnrade (Gretchen at the Spinning Wheel) also set by Reger, was compelling in its immediacy of the dramatic moment. Equally intense was her performance and involvement in of Franz Liszt’s setting of “Die junge Nonne” (The Young Nun) to the pietistic verses of Jakob Nikolaus, Liszt’s orchestral description of the physical- and inner storm creating a powerful canvas at the hands of Maestro Botstein. Liszt, a deeply literary man, was fascinated by Schubert’s alliance of music and poetry and this led him to orchestrating some 60 Schubert songs. In his setting of Goethe’s “Der Erlkonig” (The Earl King), Liszt alternates the magical sparkle of the harp, adding decorative figures of his own, with the relentless galloping of horses and urgency of the plot to power the dramatic episode; Ms. Rostorf-Zamir depicted the impending tragedy, portraying the three characters of it. Seldom heard in this country, these arrangements of Schubert Lieder made for fascinating listening. What they lose in intimacy in these settings, they gain in dramatic breadth. Rostorf-Zamir, ever attentive to the orchestra, gave an impressive and exciting performance. A real treat!

Schubert was 25 years old when he composed his Fantasie in C major, “Wanderer Fantasy” D.760, opus15, for solo piano in 1822. Composed in a grand, flamboyant style rarely used by the composer, the work, in four uninterrupted movements, is full of bravura but also presents a gamut of emotions. Written for and dedicated to a nobleman Emanuel Karl, Schubert himself remarked “The devil take it; I can’t play it”. Fascinated by Schubert’s use of form and thematic transformation, Franz Liszt arranged the essentially monothematic “Wanderer Fantasy” for piano and orchestra some time around 1850, adding almost nothing of his own. Pianist Bishara Haroni gave a well-crafted, competent reading of this highly challenging piece, bringing out its play of light and darkness, its anguish and hope. Haroni, born in Nazareth, enjoys an international career, playing with many orchestras, he plays solo recitals and chamber music. As his encore, Haroni performed Liszt’s “La Campanella”, the third of the six Grande Paganini Etudes. His skilful execution of this virtuosic piece was brilliant, varied and “orchestral”, its delicate, crystal moments reminding the listener of the piece’s title (Campanella means “little bell”.)

The program ended with Schubert’s Symphony no.9 in C major, D.944, The Great (1825-1826). Robert Schumann, having discovered the manuscript in Ferdinand Schubert’s possession, wrote to Clara Schumann claiming he had “found a symphony of heavenly length”. In contrast to many “grand” interpretations of the work, Botstein’s reading of it was fresh, free of the heaviness often heard in the opening movement, energetic and abounding in charm, yet still noble. Articulate melodic lines and fine wind-playing gave the performance color and expressiveness.

Sunday, January 10, 2010

The Alei Gefen Chorus, conductor Eli Gefen

Keren Telfed (R.A.) in association with Telfed – South African Zionist Federation (Israel) - held its annual Telfed Volunteer Awards ceremony at the Davey Family Fine Arts Auditorium of the American International School in Even Yehuda January 2nd 2010. It was an evening of recognition of the remarkable volunteer work and selflessness of members of the South African community in Israel, a tribute to those people who devote time and energy to helping South African immigrants and to Israeli society in general.

The Alei Gefen Chorus, conducted by its musical director Eli Gefen and with Anna Koroch at the piano, performed a program of songs. Founded in 1990 by Eli Gefen, the 22-member-strong choir consists largely of singers from the Former Soviet Union and performs widely in Israel and in Europe. With a repertoire including much devotional music, the choir sees its aim as using music as a means to tolerance and reconciliation between faiths.

Veteran Israeli journalist Freda Keet introduced the choir and its program, referring to the Alei Gefen Chorus as a musical symbol of tolerance among nations.

The program opened with Israel Goldfarb’s song “Shalom Aleichem” arranged for a cappella choir by Gil Aldema (b.1928.) Also arranged by Gil Aldema, we heard a sensitive, beautifully nuanced performance of David Zehavi’s “Eli, Eli” (words Hanna Senesh) and the traditional Sabbath song “Tsur mi shelo achalnu” (The Almighty from Whose Food we Have Eaten), the latter a mix of homophonic and contrapuntal textures, with Gefen using detached notes to bring out word rhythms. Aldema’s a cappella arrangement of “Jerusalem of Gold” by the great Israeli songwriter Naomi Shemer (1930-2004) is attractive and moves the melodic interest from voice to voice. The choir’s performance of it was delicate and introspective.

English composer John Rutter’s (b.1945) oeuvre consists mostly of choral music. His transparent writing, reflecting English- and French choral traditions of the early 20th century and influenced by American music, is direct and uncluttered, providing a clean, refreshing, accessible and communicative style, positive in message and bright in timbre. The Alei Gefen Chorus sang three of Rutter’s songs to piano accompaniment, opening with “For the Beauty of the Earth”, a joyful hymn of celebration based on a text by F.S.Pierpoint, followed by Rutter’s much-loved, gentle adaptation of the old Gaelic melody “Gaelic Blessing” presented by Gefen in pastel tones.
‘Deep peace of the running wave to you,
Deep peace of the flowing air to you,
Deep peace of the quiet earth to you,
Deep peace of the shining stars to you…’
Gefen dedicated the choir’s performance of “The Lord Bless You and Keep You” (Numbers 6,24), a poignant, meditative anthem typical of Rutter’s lucid style, to Gil’ad Shalit.

In July 1940, American composer and educator Randall Thompson (1899-1984) was commissioned by Serge Koussevitzky to write a joyful choral piece for the opening of the Berkshire Music Center. However, under the dark cloud of the war in Europe and with the fall of France, Thompson produced a very pensive 4-voiced piece. Thompson wrote of his piece “The music in my particular ‘Alleluia’ cannot be made to sound joyous…. It is comparable to the Book of Job, where it is written…” Gefen’s reading of the piece is fragile and delicately shaped; he takes his singers through the dynamic developments and emotional plot of this very fine piece, slowly building it up to its glorious climax and ending with the humility and resignation of the “Amen”. Randall Thompson’s “Alleluia” was surely a high point of the evening’s concert.

In a very different vein, we heard P.I.Tchaikovsky’s (1840-1893) Da Ispravitsia (Let My Prayer Arise), sung in Russian. Lending charm to the evening’s program, the piece moves back and forward from women’s voices only to mixed choir.

The Jewish composer, conductor and cantor Louis Lewandowsky (1821-1894), was born in Poland but spent most of his life in Germany. His 4-part settings of prayers and sacred texts formed a new genre of Ashkenazi synagogue music, becoming important for its direct appeal to congregations. Lewandowsky’s “Hallelujah” (c.1871) was given an uplifting and joyful performance by the choir.

“Tabernacle of Peace” by Cantor David Grosz, Eli Gefen’s father, has an interesting story behind it. One of Vienna’s finest cantors of the time, David Grosz was captured by the Nazis and died in Auschwitz. A few years ago, a research trust in Vienna located Gefen and mailed the original score of the song to him. This moving piece for cantor and mixed choir, typical of central European synagogue works, is now sung at every concert the Alei Gefen Chorus performs. In this performance, the soloist (cantor) was Vladimir Linetsky. Weaving his solo in between choral sections, his singing of it was expressive and spiritual.

The Alei Gefen Chorus’ program was varied and rich; their performance was a celebration of the expressive quality and delicacy of the human voice.

Thursday, January 7, 2010

2010 - the Chopin Year in Poland and in Israel

With 2010 commemorating 200 years since Frederic Chopin’s birth, there were celebrations at midnight on January 1st in Zelazowa Wola, Poland, Chopin’s birthplace, 60 kilometers west of Warsaw. The Warsaw Philharmonic Hall launched Chopin Year celebrations with a symphony concert January 7th. In Poland, highlights of the Chopin Year will include the “Chopin and his Europe” International Festival in Warsaw (August 2-31) and the 14th International Chopin Piano Competition in Warsaw (October 2-23.) The Polish Year in Poland is the initiative of the Polish Ministry of Culture and the Fryderyk Chopin Institute (Warsaw.)

The Eila Eitan public relations agency and the Polish Institute hosted an informative and enjoyable morning meeting at the Felicja Blumental Center in Tel Aviv December 29th 2009 to enlighten those present as to the very many events taking place in Israel throughout 2010 as part of the Chopin Year. (The Polish Institute is an extension of the Polish Ministry of Foreign Affairs that promotes Polish culture and cooperation in the areas of arts, society, education and science.) Ms. Joanna Stachyra, director of the Polish Institute in Israel, welcomed those gathered. Mentioning the fact that Chopin’s music is understood and performed all over the world, she talked about the many activities and concerts taking place in Poland during the year – concerts, workshops and competitions in Warsaw and other locations as well as the opening of the new interactive Chopin Museum March 1st in Warsaw.

The press conference at the Felicja Blumental Music Center opened with the audience viewing a few minutes of Polish-Hungarian pianist Piotr Anderszewski’s 2009 documentary film “Unquiet Traveller” . Anderszewski (b.1968 Warsaw) muses on Chopin, saying that although his “costume remains impeccable”, anguish and “screams” lie behind the composer’s transparent musical style.

Leah Agmon, director of the Edward Aldwell Center, spoke of the emphasis on education of the Israel Chopin Year activities opening with the International Chopin Symposium and Festival January 3rd to 7th 2010, a conference of lectures, workshops and master classes organized by Dr. Tamara Balter at the Edward Aldwell Center of the Jerusalem Academy of Music and Dance Giv’at Ram campus, in collaboration with the Polish Institute. Maestro Murray Perahia presented the opening address. Lecturing and guiding participants were Professor John Rink (Cambridge University), Professor Carl Schachter (Queens College and CUNY), Professor Assaf Zohar (Jerusalem Academy of Music and Dance), Professor William Rothstein (Queens College and CUNY), Professor Halina Goldberg (Indiana University), Professor Eytan Agmon (Bar Ilan University), Professor Alexander Tamir (JAMD, Eden-Tamir Music Center), Professor Roger Kamien (Hebrew University of Jerusalem) and Professor Andrej Jasinski (Katowice Academy of Music).

An interesting concert series will be presented by the Center for Chamber Music of the Lynn and Ted Arison Israeli Conservatory of Music (Stricker Conservatorium) in Tel Aviv. Grouped under the title of "Echoes of Heritage”, the series will begin January 15th with a lecture by Dr. Ron Regev and will be followed by seven recitals, each focusing on a specific theme or style. Performers will be Daniel Gortler, Ron Regev, Ido Barshai, Yaron Kohlberg, Matan Porat, Benjamin Hochman, Roman Rabinovich and Shlomi Shem-Tov. A special concert, under the auspices of the Polish Institute and the Adam Mitskevich Institute, will be performed by the highly acclaimed Polish pianist Karol Radziwonowicz. More information on these concerts can be found on

Professor Alexander Tamir spoke of the Chopin Society in Israel and its plans for the Chopin Year. Established by Tamir and the late Bracha Eden, the Chopin Society of Israel (a member of the International Federation of Chopin Societies - educational organizations running small competitions and concerts in schools and music conservatories) in conjunction with Kol Yisrael, the Edward Aldwell Center and the Polish Institute, hopes to have all of Chopin’s piano works performed during the course of the year. Six concerts will take place at the Eden-Tamir Music Center, Ein Kerem, Jerusalem. Among events taking place, the listening public will be able to hear very young pianists playing their favorite Chopin piece, young composers’ original works inspired by Chopin’s music and works of both Chopin and Robert Schumann (Schumann was also born in 1810.) Four of the events will be included in the 2010 Israel Festival. The Andrej Jagodinski Piano Trio will be performing a concert of Polish jazz. For more detail, please refer to

Director of the Felicja Blumental Music Center Avigail Arnheim spoke of a Chopin event of a different kind to take place May 14th 2010 at the Blumental Center in Tel Aviv. “An Appointment with Chopin” will focus on the Romantic, nationalistic, lyrical and musical aspects of Chopin the composer and virtuoso pianist. The audience will hear Leila Silberstein, Yoni Farchi and Tomer Gevirtz performing Chopin piano pieces interspersed with readings of texts by Baudelaire, Polish poet Wislawa Szymborska (b.1923), Georges Sand, Victor Hugo, Paul Verlaine and Arthur Rimbaud.

Guests of the meeting enjoyed some fine playing of Chopin piano pieces by Ariel Lenny (12) and Itai Meir (16), both young pianists taking part in the Edward Aldwell Center’s program for outstanding pianists.

Sunday, January 3, 2010

The Israel Camerata Jerusalem's performance of J.S.Bach's Christmas Oratorio

The Israel Camerata Jerusalem’s (musical director Avner Biron) performance of four of the six cantatas of J.S.Bach’s (1685-1750) Christmas Oratorio BWV 248 (1734), the last of four different presentations of this work in Israel December 2009, was conducted by Tim Brown (UK). Soloists were soprano Ye’ela Avital, countertenor David Feldman, tenor Simon Wall and baritone Jonathan Sells. The Clare College Choir of Cambridge (musical director Tim Brown) sang the choruses. This writer attended the performance at the Henry Crown Symphony Hall of the Jerusalem Theatre December 29th 2009.

Some of the musical material used in the Christmas Oratorio has been taken from former works of the composer. Instrumental combinations of each cantata are different. In fact, each cantata was originally performed on a specific feast day over a period of thirteen days. The cantatas chosen for this performance were the First Cantata – for the first day of Christmas - “Triumph, rejoicing, rise praising these days now”, the Fifth Cantata – for the first Sunday of the New Year - “Glory to Thee, God, be sung now”, the Fourth Cantata –for the Feast of the Circumcision - “Fall and thank Him, fall and praise Him”, ending with the Third Cantata – for the Third Day of Christmas - “Ruler of heaven, give ear to our stammer”. The first- and third cantatas are both written in the key of D major, hence the order chosen for this concert.

Maestro Tim Brown, conducting the Israel Camerata Jerusalem for the first time, has been the musical director of Clare College Cambridge since 1979. He is a much sought-after conductor in Britain and elsewhere, composes choral music, working with the Clare College Choir (until 2000 a men’s choir), today a mixed choir of fine young singers, an outstanding ensemble with a varied repertoire. Their singing of the choruses was fresh, exacting, fired with energy, well punctuated and articulate; Brown’s attention to text, dynamics, diction, language pronunciation and phrase-endings is reflected in the enthralling performance of this choir.

Israeli soprano Ye’ela Avital was expressive, her phrases shaped well. In the trio for soprano, tenor and alto with violin obbligato (soloist Arnold Kobiliansky) from Cantata no. 5, “Ah, when will that time appear then?” she tastefully weaves her line into and around the melodic strands of Wall and Feldman. This item was surely one of the high points of the performance, with Bach’s sophisticated contrapuntal layering ever amazing the mind and ear. Young Israeli countertenor David Feldman’s voice is filling out with a rich mix of colors. He is expressive, brings in some nice ornamentation and was clearly moved by the work; his voice is a little too dark in piano sections, lacking stability throughout all registers.

British baritone Jonathan Sells (b.1982) is a singer with a repertoire spanning from early polyphonic music to contemporary works, from recitals to opera. This was his first appearance with the Israel Camerata Jerusalem. Sells’ vocal ease and rich and pleasing mix of color were matched by his convincing reading of the work and involvement throughout.

Drawing the various threads of the oratorio text together, British tenor Simon Wall, in his role as the Evangelist, presented the narrative in all its detail (from the Gospel according to St. Luke and St. Matthew) to his audience with clarity, humility and conviction. His aria in Part Four “I would but for thine honour live now” was joyful and spiced with fine melismatic singing. Wall’s professional engagements include much work with top vocal groups, recitals and recordings.

Bach’s Christmas Oratorio offers the orchestra, as well as several of its players, many wonderful moments, with Camerata instrumentalists delighting listeners throughout the evening with the beauty of obbligato arias. Among the soloists was young trumpet player Gonny Eshed, whose brilliant performance added festive joy to the performance. Tim Brown juggled the fine balance of orchestra, choir and soloists splendidly, producing an inspiring and memorable performance.

The Clare College Choir gave a sensitive, nuanced rendering of Israeli songwriter Naomi Shemer's song "Snow on My Town", delighting the audience.