Monday 4 March 2013

Mendelssohn and Britten at St. Andrew's Hall

On the evening of Thursday 21st February 2013 I attended the UEA Symphony Orchestra and Choir concert at St. Andrew's Hall, Norwich which featured Sharon Andrea Choa - Conductor, Simon Ireson - Piano, Lisa Cassidy - Soprano, Diana Moore - Alto and Andrew O'Brien - Tenor. The programme consisted of Piano Concerto No.1 in G minor - Mendelssohn and Spring Symphony - Britten. The Broadland Youth Choir performed on Britten's Spring Symphony.

The first of Mendelssohn's two numbered piano concertos was composed at the beginning of October 1831. Mendelssohn himself was the soloist at the first performance and his admission that it had been written in haste seem to be borne out by the fact that the piano part is left blank in the autograph full score.

Britten's Spring Symphony was composed between 1948 and 1949. It was commissioned by the Kusevitsky Foundation and dedicated to Serge Kusevitsky and the Boston Symphony Orchestra. This was Britten's most ambitious choral work to date which he described its subject as the progress of Winter to Spring and the re-awakening of the earth and life which that means.

This was a wonderful evening of Classical Music at St. Andrew's Hall with Simon Ireson beginning the night in style as the soloist on Mendelssohn's Piano Concerto No.1. Everyone put a lot of work and effort into Britten's Spring Symphony and we were rewarded with a wonderful and uplifting performance from the Orchestra and Choirs including the Broadland Youth Choir.

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