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Diana Ambache

Old Masters, New Mistresses

By Warwick Thompson

Metro, 7 October 2003

Tonight the Old Masters are Haydn and Mozart, and The Ambache plays Symphony No 83 (La Poule) and Piano Concerto No 19 respectively. And since the group has an excellent track record in beautifully judged, clean and crisp classical playing it should be a treat.

The New Mistress is Louise Talma, (1906-1996) an American composer and the first woman ever to be awarded two Guggenheim Fellowships. Diana Ambache has unearthed her neo- classical 15-minute piece Full Circle (1985) and describes it as a work which contrasts lyrical sections of haunting bittersweet melancholy with passages of bold, angular motor energy.

'People like a point of reference, so I guess you could say it's like neo-classical Stravinsky,' says Ambache. 'But Talma has her own very distinctive harmonic voice.' At 6.45 Diana Ambache talks about her recent discoveries in general and Talma's music in particular in conversation with Jenny Agutter.


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