RPO/Dutoit/Repin RFH 20 January

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Picture of Vadim Repin from http://www.rpo.co.uk

1.  STRAVINSKY Symphonies of Wind Instruments (1920)
2. TCHAIKOVSKY Violin Concerto
3. RIMSKY-KORSAKOV Scheherazade

According to the programme notes, the Symphonies of Wind Instruments was not meant to ‘please an audience’, nor to arouse its passions.  It succeeded in these ambitions, and the lack of interest did spread to some of the players on occasion, though the brass did a good job of making a loud noise when given the chance.

But the audience was pleased–and its passions were aroused–by the Tchaikovsky Violin Concerto.  Vadim Repin played with complete mastery and a great variety of tone colour, while Charlges Dutoit pulled the tempi around in a satisfyingly idiomatic fashion.  There was spontaneous and really quite prolonged applause after the second movement.

And after the interval, we had Scheherazade, with the violin part winningly played by leader Clio Gould and many other parts of the orchestra getting a chance to show what they could do.  This is another piece where you need a nice brightly-coloured cartoon film or a ballet to keep your mind from wandering, but at least the little girl sitting along from me had enough ice cream to keep her occupied.

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