Northern Chamber Orchestra, online, 18–19 April 2020, free entry - Visit now
Join the Northern Chamber Orchestra online this weekend for a stream of their November 2019 concert with cellist Raphael Wallfisch at The Stoller Hall. This was originally streamed live to care homes in the North West, but the musicians have kindly given permission for it to be made available to the public for 24 hours.
Wallfisch is among the most recorded classical artists in the world. His extensive discography includes nearly every major work for his instrument. Just as prolific on the stage, he is internationally lauded for his masterful technique, remarkable attention to detail and soaring, singing tone. Regularly performing with the world’s finest orchestras, Wallfisch has, for a number of years, been President of the Northern Chamber Orchestra, with whom he presents this wonderful programme.
Kicking off the concert is Gustav Holst’s St Paul’s Suite, in which the great English composer’s wonderful string writing shines brightly. Making characterful use of folk tunes, the work begins with a darkly driven jig and ends with a spirited and challenging finale. Listen out for Greensleeves and The Dargason, which are interwoven to glorious effect in that last movement.
Following Holst is Tchaikovsky’s original version of the Rococo Variations, which throw down a real challenge to cellists, both musically and technically. They demand agility, beautiful centilena and a total command of every facet of the instrument. Wallfisch’s rich expression and virtuosic power dazzles therein.
Up next we have the UK premiere by Mieczyslaw Weinberg, performed by Wallfisch. A contemporary of Shostakovich, Weinberg’s work has slowly been gaining recognition from audiences and critics alike. His Cello Concertino is a lyrically ruminating, unexpectedly touching affair, which shows its composer to be a rediscovered 20th Century genius.
Finally, we’re treated to a performance of Schubert’s Symphony No 5. Bursting with light, youthful exuberance (the composer penned it at the tender age of 19), this symphony is packed full of tunes whilst offering all manner of harmonic surprises and developments. It will cap off the evening in joyous style.
Holst – St Paul’s Suite
Tchaikovsky – Variations on a Rococo Theme (with Raphael Wallfisch, cello)
Weinberg – Cello Concertino op 42 (with Raphael Wallfisch, cello)
Schubert – Symphony no 5
Raphael Wallfisch with Northern Chamber Orchestra was recorded at The Stoller Hall in Manchester on Friday 8 November 2019 and will be streaming on Northern Chamber Orchestra’s YouTube channel.
Northern Chamber Orchestra, online