Seldom have two idiosyncratic talents combined with such wit and artistry as violinist Patricia Kopatchinskaja and cellist Sol Gabetta, long-time collaborators on the concert platform and friends off-stage, produce in this effervescent exercise in musical acrobatics.
Sol & Pat is a duo recital re-cast as a jugglers-on-a-high-wire circus act, with a dash of clowning adding colour to the excitement. It’s the product of two distinctive instrumental voices: the ever-quirky Kopatchinskaja, fresh from her Pierrot Lunaire , as electric as it was exotic (reviewed 20 April 2021), and Gabetta, a cellist who has developed her own distinctive style and here allows it full exuberant reign.
Central to the violin-cello repertoire, Ravel’s A Minor Sonata and Kodály’s D Minor Duo provide the chiaroscuro-contrast centrepieces. Ravel’s Debussy-dedicated Sonata is a vinegary, concentrated, pungently realised work. Kopatchinskaja and Gabetta treat its restless counterpoint with a deference matched by the deliberateness of their choices elsewhere, not least in the animated outer movements and achingly elongated third movement.