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  • Writer's pictureCheryl Osborne



Conducted by Asher Fisch, the orchestra's principal conductor and artistic advisor. Tchaikovsky's Violin Concerto in D was written in 1878 following Tchaikovsky's travel in France, Italy and Switzerland after fleeing from his disastrous marriage. The work is filled with lyric melody suggestive of the Slavic and Russian folksong. Despite the difficulties of the solo part, due to the many double stops, glissandi, trills, leaps, and dissonances, the violin focuses on decorating the theme rather than on presenting purely technical passages. In the lively finale, the influence of folksong is most strongly heard. "Ukranian-born Vadim Gluzman is a superb violinist of the Russian school and his interpretation of this beloved Tchaikovsky concerto, with its fiery virtuosity and wistful poetry" elicited a sustained ovation from concertgoers and a standing ovation from some. Second on the programme was Mendelssohn's Italian Symphony - Symphony No. 4 in A Major, Op. 90 - so named because it was intended to evoke the sights and sounds of Italy and was written some years after the composer's visit to that country. The first movement conveys the breathless excitement of travel and the impression of a pastoral landscape. In the Andante con moto, we are meant to hear a religious procession and the initial melody has something of the placid, meandering character of plainchant. The finale comes the closest to a musical postcard in its energetic saltarello (a musical dance form) rhythm. its “little hop” in a quick triple meter which combined with the tarantella, together propel the finale into its whirlwind finish. The Italian Symphony is a fine-tuned symphonic drama—an orchestral landscape across which audiences can imagine their own characters and stories. (from various sources). For lunch we visited the new reincarnation of the Grand Central Hotel in Midland

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