The arabesque is the red thread that leads us through this program. At first sight, the musical worlds of fin de siècle-composers Claude Debussy, Leoš Janáček, and Camille Saint-Saëns might seem far apart. However, the form of the arabesque is where they find each other: the balancing between the recognisable form and the dream sequence. Debussy’s well-known piano works are alternated by some early works for piano four hands, all arranged by the Ebonit Saxophone Quartet. This program is full of blending colours in the music of Debussy combined with misty Moravian folk music by Janáček and concrete sounds in Saint-Saëns’ Danse Macabre.
De Volkskrant about Ebonit’s CD ‘Arabesque’, released on 7 Mountain Records: “No virtuosic exuberance, but the small gesture: Arabesque sounds like pure magic.”
Our debut CD is a combination of “The Seven Last Words of Christ” by Joseph Haydn and XXcentury music. Following the tonal and dramatic progression of the masterpiece by Haydn we have replaced some of the movements by compositions by Reger, Webern, Sibelius and Schostakovich. With this CD we wanted to create one continuous story and meditation for our listeners. In order to achieve that, we have used the short texts from the oratorio version of “The Seven Last Words”, which used to be read by the Bishop during the Good Friday. For this project we have invited renowned singer Claron McFadden, who takes the “role” of bishop and a guide for the whole CD, by reading these texts and setting a mood before every piece.
The program of our CD consists of string quartet music, which has been arranged specially for our formation, mainly by the members of the quartet. We believe that the sound of the Ebonit Saxophone Quartet brings a new, innovative and fresh view for that music.
Our debut CD received an Edison Klassiek Nomination in 2016: “The Ebonit Saxophone Quartet has an impressive sound and delivers here with rotating and pure interplay an even ambitious as imposant debute. The strikingly arranged Sieben letzten Worte
from Joseph Haydn forms the spine of this wonderful album, with a special involvement from Claron McFadden.”