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Jičínský deník, July 2014

Jičín´s Dvořák Festival Reaches Its Peak

Zdeněk Vokurka, 11.7.2014, Jičínský deník

The concert set in relief the sheer wealth of the potential available to the festival´s dramaturgy. Its pick of creative talent for the programme was first-class, featuring three fascinating artists: harpist Kateřina Englichová, viola player Jitka Hosprová, and mezzo-soprano Barbora Polášková. Their performances deserve the highest critical appraisal.

We were treated to a delightful rendition of four of Antonín Dvořák´s Psalms settings, Biblical Songs. Mezzo Barbora Polášková gave proof of spontaneous musicality in her approach to the interpretation of Dvořák´s work, thoroughly convincing and with just the right emphasis on the texts´ contents, ranging in tone from humbly devout to joyously jubilant, reaffirming her status as a major talent in the young generation of singers, following a series of successful debuts on prestigious Czech opera stages. The harmony between her voice and the harp accompaniment was most impressive.

In 1976, Miroslav Kubička, then 25, wrote an interesting vocal-instrumental composition setting texts from flautist and poet Jan Riedlbauch, entitled Songs of a Hidden Beauty. In its account, the immaculate empathy between Englichová, Hosprová and Riedlbauch, in conjunction with the mezzo-soprano of Barbora Polášková, marked an eminently professional asset to the present-day musical culture at large. The art of all the soloists, displaying flawless bravura coupled with a sense of involvement, individuality, as well as remarkable technical skills, clearly won the day, earning them much deserved standing ovations of the audience in Jičín´s St. James´s Church packed to the last seat. There, we delighted in the presence of interpretive art at its finest.