The HSO's Keys To Romance At Bushnell

Two pianos aren’t necessarily better than one. The swagger of the virtuoso levels off. The shared chemistry of the unit absorbs individual charisma. Power displaces clarity.

Anderson & Roe, a Steinway Label duo that performs the Hartford Symphony Orchestra at The Keys to Romance, a Masterworks Series running from Feb. 16 to 18, succeeds more than most. Scope its YouTube page, packed with dramatically shot, softly lit, sensual short films: personal charm abounds, sounds and smiles intermingle, and chops overflow.

The music ain’t bad either: A&R’s “Fantasy on Bizet’s Carmen for Two Pianos and Orchestra, which anchors the HSO’s Romance concerts, leads listeners through a range of textures and moods, dotted by stunningly quiet passages and fleet-fingered rapture.

Also happening: Mascagni’s “Intermezzo” from Cavalleria rusticana; Haydn’s Symphony No. 104 (“London); Anderson & Roe joining the HSO for the “Allegro ma non troppo” movement from Poulenc’s Concerto for Two Pianos in D major; duets to be named later. Carolyn Kuan conducts.

Masterworks Series: The Keys to Romance takes place at the Belding Theater at the Bushnell, 166 Capitol Ave., Hartford, Feb. 16 to 18 at 8 p.m. and 3 p.m. (Sunday). $38 and up. hartfordsymphony.org, 860-987-5900.

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