Sunlight and Shadows

Wednesday 24 October 2012 at 7.30pm

Symphony Hall, Birmingham +44 (0)121 345 0603

City of Birmingham Symphony Orchestra

Edward Gardner conductor
Valeriy Sokolov violin

Smetana: The Bartered Bride – Overture 7′
Bartók: Violin Concerto No. 2 36′
Dvořák: Symphony No. 7 38′

Bohemian rhapsodies: when Smetana’s overture to The Bartered Bride burst into fizzing dancing life, so did Czech music. CBSO principal guest conductor Edward Gardner directs a concert of warm sunshine and dark shadows, finishing with the symphony that may not be Dvorák’s best-known – but might just be his greatest. In between comes Bartók’s powerful Second Violin Concerto: Hungarian passion, deep feeling and ear-tingling musical fireworks, played tonight by a young soloist who’s been described as “breathtaking”.


Review by David Hart, Birmingham Post:

Click here for full review

…     “Bartok’s Violin Concerto No.2 impressed even more, although for entirely different reasons. Gardner drew such sensitivity and character from the orchestra, and so many subtleties from the kaleidoscopically transparent score (the delicacies of the Andante involving woodwind, harp and celesta were quite magical), there were times when you almost stopped listening to the soloist.

But the quietly imposing presence and dazzling technique of Valeriy Sokolov made that quite impossible. The young Ukrainian’s vibrant warmth was, as it should be in Bartok’s most melodious outpourings, tinged with elegiac poignancy, while the more virtuosic elements of the piece sparkled with agility.”     …