Matthew Barley/Cellist

Music is the language that permits me to converse with the beyond.

Robert Schumann

Sweden – Vinterfest

Having a wonderfully wintry time in Sweden at Martin Frost’s Vinterfest. Not only is he one of the world’s really great clarinettists, but he organises a great festival. The them this year is flames, and the paths to the concert venues have been lined with burning torches and candles that look so dramatic in the snow – and the main church in the town of Mora last was covered in huge projected flames. This lunchtime I had the intense pleasure of playing the Schumann with Giovanni Guzzo, Goran Frost and Julien Quentin – I’d never played the piece before and it is just incredible – it’s rare that every movement of a piece works totally perfectly, and it must rank as one of the top ten chamber compositions of all time. This evening I have some duets to play with talented bandoneonist Per Arve Glorvigen, and tomorrow’s concert will be Ravel Trio – another masterpiece. Well, I’m starving, and I need to brave a blizzard and get to dinner!