Dimitri Ashkenazy live at the Klassik Musikfest Mühlviertel
In 2007 and 2008, the first two years of the Klassik Musikfest Mühlviertel, we recorded the dress rehearsals and the concerts, a possibility that we could not sustain in the following years due to two reasons: First, it meant that the doors and windows of the barn had to be kept shut which meant nearly unbearable heat inside in July, and second, the festival simply could not afford it any more. Still I find it remarkable that we managed to have five CDs from the festival, and this one features not only a great musician, but also one of my dearest friends.
Dimitri Ashkenazy and I met at a festival in Germany in 2004 (I think) and instantly felt a musical and human connection that has lost nothing of its intensity to me until now. For me, he simply is "Mr Clarinet", and his sound touches my heart in a way that I cannot describe. Hearing him and Ursula Langmayr in Der Hirt auf dem Felsen still makes me shiver. Over the years, we have played most of the repertoire that involves our two instruments together, and two of the most famous and most beautiful works can be heard on this recording: the Brahms and Zemlinsky clarinet trios, together with Christopher Hinterhuber, who I first met in 1989, when we were both prize winners at the Austrian "Jugend Musiziert" competition. The ones captuered on this recording are the moments in my life that make me realize why I have become a musician: being allowed to play these masterpieces with such great musicians and friends at a place where an appreciative audience can even be felt on a CD recording.