Nordic Odyssey


Thursday 10 March 2011 at 7.30pm

Symphony Hall, Birmingham +44 (0)121-780 3333

City of Birmingham Symphony Orchestra

Michael Seal  conductor
Laurence Jackson  violin

Sibelius: The Oceanides 10′
Nielsen: Violin Concert 35′
Sørensen: Exit Music (UK Premiere) 13′
Sibelius: Symphony No. 5 31′ Listen
requires Real Player

A glowing sunrise, a flight of swans, the endless stillness of the great
northern forests…different listeners have heard many things in
Sibelius’s Fifth. But you don’t have to see any images at all to be
overwhelmed by the freshness, the beauty and the elemental power of
this majestic 20th century symphony. It’s the climax of a concert that
positively surges with the forces of nature, from Sibelius’s luminous
Mediterranean seascape, through Nielsen’s wonderfully original violin
concerto (a splendid showcase for CBSO leader Laurence Jackson)
and a freshly-minted classic by one of Denmark’s most accessible
contemporary masters. Conductor Ilan Volkov has gripped CBSO
audiences in Mahler and Shostakovich; expect passionately committed
performances of this supremely original music.

We regret to announce that Ilan Volkov, who was due to conduct this concert, has withdrawn due to illness. We are very grateful to Michael Seal, CBSO Associate Conductor, who has agreed to conduct the concert at short notice. There is no change to the advertised programme.

Review by Maggie Cotton, Birmingham Post:

…   “Here we have a consummate soloist, always giving his all with exquisite tone, immaculate intonation and breathtaking imagination.”  […]

[…]  Finally to round off an epic evening a no-holds-barred performance of Sibelius’ Symphony No 5, beginning with pristine intonation from winds, then onto shimmering immaculate unison strings in the scherzo. From buzzing violas, faultless pizzicatos and hardly audible CBSO pianissimos – wonderful in Symphony Hall –to the devastating heart-pounding climax after the triumphant key change in the finale. This was a performance to remember.”

Rating * * * * *

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