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Title: Duo Novair
Artist: Miny Dekkers (accordion) and Henri Bok (bass clarinet and alto saxophone)
Supplied by: Miny Dekkers and Henri Bok
Review date: 25th February 2000

Night & Day (for bass clarinet and accordion) Jacob ter Veldhuis (The Netherlands, 1951)
Persuasion (for bass clarinet and accordion) Norman Symonds (Canada, 1920)
Decade (for bass clarinet and accordion) Enrique Raxach (Spain, 1944)
Landscape and clothes (for bass clarinet and accordion) B. Soll (The Netherlands, 1944)
No pain, no gain (for alto saxophone and accordion) C. Meijering (The Netherlands, 1954)

Miny Dekkers was musically trained at the Amsterdam Music School. She is a member of several chamber music ensembles and frequently gives recitals and concerts in her native country Holland, as well as in France, Finland and Canada. Miny participates in film and theatre production, and plays regular accordion parts with among others the Royal Concertebouw Orchestra of Amsterdam and the Rotterdam Philharmonic Orchestra.

Miny Dekkers is a pioneer in the development of new literature for the accordion as a solo instrument and in chamber music. Currently she teaches at the Conservatorium of Arnhem, Zwolle and Rotterdam, and organizes the prestigious International Accordion Week in Amsterdam.

Henri Bok is a Professor of bass clarinet at the Rotterdam Conservatory. He performs with major international symphony orchestras, gives lectures and organizes international seminars.

As its name implies "Duo Novair" (nova) offers us something new and different, beginning with the unique sound these two instruments create. Combination of bass clarinet and accordion and alto saxophone and accordion is very rare, but the final sound result is excellent. The two instruments blend in together very naturally, producing rich, mature and vibrant sound color. I found it most appealing.

The pieces the duo performs are pure contemporary. The two musicians obviously are professionals of high standard on their instruments. They perform with great tonal culture, structuring the program meaning of the pieces very thoughtfully, and achieving very vivid imaginary musical pictures/images. In that regard, I think the composer's explanatory notes are very helpful to the listener. Here is one:

About " Landscape and Clothes" composers wrote as an introduction "The piece was written for Duo Novair at the end of 1992. A constant landscape in which appears a woman in ever-changing clothes. Such an event can also become music, as everything else conceivable. A statistics (which dress, how often) and an ever recurring prognosis, (today she will probably wear this, that or the other) bring the decision during the composing, partly decide the design, the colors to be chosen. Music can be compelling right away, also for a long time, but it can also be very different, thought of in a very different way. It is however nothing else but a sounding mirror of an infinite multiformity".

This recording is surely a real treat for the lovers of contemporary music.

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