Archive for May, 2013

Review of the piano recital by Cristina Cámara Rovira at the Palacio de la Música, Torrevieja on the 23rd May 2013

May 24, 2013

The piano recital by Cristina Cámara Rovira at the Palacio de la Música, Torrevieja on the 23rd May 2013 was enthusiastically received by a large audience. Cristina played a challenging programme that included works by Back, Schumann and De Falla.

Bach Prelude and Fugue X11, BWV 881 and his Italian Concerto BWV 971 were played confidently and securely with judicious use of the sustaining pedal. Key melodic material was well marked and phrased. The highlight was the Andante of the Italian Concerto. In the opening of this movement, especially, Cristina created that unique tension that accompanies the best of performances of Bach.

Schumann’s Carnival op.9 was a mammoth undertaking and Cristina demonstrated a phenomenal technique. The different character and expressiveness of the separate movements were clearly apparent and on a number of occasions her rhythmic awareness and agility were particularly impressive.

The final work, Fantasia Baetica by de Falla was a very good choice to end this worthy event. Her keen sense of touch, her ability to punctuate de Falla’s challenging multi-faceted episodes as well as her astute understanding of the underlying musicality of this piece held the audience transfixed.

This was indeed a most enjoyable concert.

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Review of Ely Youth Choir Festival Concert in the Hayward Theatre Ely Sunday 28th April 2013.

May 11, 2013

 

 Ely Youth Choir Festival Concert in the Hayward Theatre Ely on Sunday 28th April 2013 was a great success. North Suffolk Youth Choir, Cantiamo Youth Choir, and Ely Youth Choir gathered together for a day’s singing in a series of workshops as part of the inaugural Festival. The culmination of the event was a most uplifting concert.

The singers were in fine voice, creating moments of excitement and beauty. The concert opened with ‘Don’t stop believin’’ with the combined choirs singing under the directorship of Andrew Parnell. It was obvious from the start that these young singers were thoroughly enjoying themselves. Vetta Wise then conducted John Rutter’s ‘ Look at the World’. This song was particularly smooth and expressive. A lively performance of a Zimbabwean chant, ‘Freedom’, followed and an interesting arrangement of ‘Your Face’ by Bob Chilcott was the first for Roger Barns to conduct. Charlie Penn led the choirs in a moving and sustained performance of ‘In Remembrance’ by Daley,   Cantiamo proved a very competent choir as they mastered an intriguing, challenging and quirky arrangement of  ‘Waltzing Matilda’ by Bob Chilcott,

Accompanied by Alison Evans, North Suffolk Choir gave a worthy performance of ‘Sure on this shining night’ by Barber arranged by Dick Averre,. Their ‘Sanctus’ from Mass for Many Nations (by Lang) was delightful, the lively clapping section faultless. Ely Youth Choir gave a charming performance of  ‘Hallelujah’ by Cohen, and a lively rendition of ‘You Can’t stop the Beat’ from Hairspray by Shaiman. The grand finale of this most enjoyable concert was ‘Fly me to the Moon’ by Howard arranged by Shaw conducted by Charlie Penn.

Juliet Abrahamson, Director of the Cambridge Music Festival gave encouraging advice to the performers at the end of the event and mentioned what a good idea having a festival for youth was, and that the Cambridge Festival may feature one in the future.

Congratulations go to the Festival Director Jonathan Rogers  and we look forward to next year’s promised Youth Choir Festival.

Review of Ely Sinfonia’s Concert on Saturday April 13th in Ely Cathedral

May 11, 2013

Ely Sinfonia, an orchestra of professional and amateur musicians founded in 1999, has grown to a sizeable and effective group who gave e most enjoyable concert in Ely Cathedral on Saturday.

The programme was well chosen and included the popular ‘Hebrides Overture’ (Fingals’ Cave) by Felix Mendelssohn, ‘Horn Concerto no 1’ by Richard Strauss and ‘Symphony no 2’ by Johannes Brahms.

The opening overture by Mendelssohn was delightful. The performers captured the spirit of this moving piece. What was particularly noticeable was the highly expressive phrasing that gave Mendelssohn’s wonderful melodies emotive depth.

Nick Wolmark, French horn soloist, joined the orchestra to perform the first horn concerto by Richard Strauss. There were some wonderful moments in his performance and when the first notes of the instrument echoed in the high vaults of the Cathedral it was obvious that this was definitely the best place to choose to perform this work. Nick’s playing was beautifully sonorous and crucial notes were given strength and validity in his performance. The subtlety and smoothness he achieved in the second movement was particularly impressive. The orchestra was particularly good in this work and gave the soloist strong, effective support.

Brahms at the best of times is challenging to play but his second symphony was well worth the effort for these performers.  There were some glorious moments and the opening of the third movement was one of the most magical of the evening. The sweeping melodies of Brahms were beautifully played and there were many times when the instrumentalists were able to let us glimpse the genius of Brahms’s writing with his many interweaving melodic echoes and reminiscent strands coming together in a complex cohesive texture.

This was indeed a very pleasant evening. The next concert on Saturday 28th September 2013 730 in Ely Cathedral should not be missed.