I've probably said it before but this was perhaps the most difficult piece I've played (until next time?). Maruki does the repertoire and doesn't flinch on the programs, eg, next concert includes two Russian symphonies. But this time, it was the standard format, an overture, a concerto and a symphony. First half was Rossini L'Italiana in Algieri and a to-die-for lovely clarinet concerto by Mozart. They went well although of very different styles. Rossini is all operatic Italian flair and Mozart is dignified, super-pretty and downright touching. Both done pretty well and Beth doing a great job on the solo clarinet. But the second half was Sibelius Symphony 2. Variously delicate, demanding, noisy, unrelenting, with huge changes of tempo throughout, the longest bass solo I've played and the strangest score that just seemed to express itself through various unrelated parts adding to make up one story. Strange, that; confounding at times. A huge count demander. Mozart was never thus. I wish we could have played it again in performance the next day. It would have been so much more settled on day 2. Like the professional orchestras who get to play a repertoire regularly. There's so much more closeness and comfort then. But no, this was just a single outing and we did not perfect but not bad. Another to add to my list.
Maruki Orchestra performed under Kristen Simpson (conductor) at Albert Hall. Beth Bantrick (clarinet) soloed in the Mozart. The bass end was Jennifer Groom and Eric Pozza (basses).