Dorota Anderszewska & Piotr Anderszewski | Wigmore Hall, London

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The Independent Culture

If the word "accompanist" were abolished, then perhaps "accompanists" would behave more like equal partners, as they should. There is, of course, the small question of equality of fees. How good it was, for once, to have the question resolved, when the brother and sister team of Dorota Anderszewska and Piotr Anderszewski performed at the Wigmore Hall on Tuesday.

He, of course, is well known and admired in this country. She is leader of the Orchestre National Bordeaux Aquitaine and also a soloist in her own right. She was trying out a new violin, on which she produced a warm and silky tone, and floated, in the middle movement of Beethoven's G major Sonata, a kind of confidential cantabile.

The two players melded as one, she borne up by his strength, though he seemed to be using the una corda pedal quite a lot to cope with the Wigmore's boomy acoustic. In Lutoslawski's Partita of 1984, Dorota had to assert herself more - the music is often aggressive and rhetorical.

The violin part struck me as more colourful than what Lutoslawski wrote for the piano, though he himself was a pianist. And while this work is highly dramatic (it was originally written for Pinchas Zukerman and Marc Neikrug), it doesn't seem terribly personal.

The recital's second half was entirely Viennese, with Schubert's A major Sonata followed by six pieces by Fritz Kreisler. This turned into something like a quiz, with mystified looks exchanged among the audience after Dorota Anderszewska's announcements, which were almost impossible to understand. Of course, we all ought to know these entertaining little masterpieces, which the pair played with immaculate taste and affection. But knowing and identifying are two different things.

For the record, they were "La Gitana", "Midnight Bells", "Marche miniature viennoise", Rondino on a Theme by Beethoven (the least alluring), "Tambourin chinois" and "Liebesleid". After which, the Anderszewskis played Bartok's Rumanian Dances and the third movement from Bach's B minor Sonata as a very generous bonus.

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