07 June 2016

One hell of a program

Maruki takes on the big challenges and this program was as big as I could imagine. To warm up, Dvorak Carnival overture. Then Mendelssohn Symphony no.4 Italian; someone told me some of the quick passages are commonly used for professional orchestral auditions and I could believe it. Then a break before the heavy lifting, Tchaikovsky Symphony no.6 Pathetique, a deeply felt end-of-life portrayal starting with two delicate divided double bass lines and ending with those two lines spelling out a fading heartbeat. And a waltz in five. It's quite stunning and transparent storytelling that I seldom expect in music, but maybe I'm just hearing these pieces differently given the intimacy that comes with learning to play them. The Mendelssohn was more a jaunty, bouncing line but with an equally story-like second movement with a walking bass line that speaks of a pilgrim march. The Dvorak was just lively and playful from the top. Maruki played the works best ever, as one does with the encouragement of and audience and the performance. Not quite the breakneck pace or the delicate precision of the professionals on CDs but unexpectedly well for a local community orchestra. And the sound was big. We had something like 70 players on the day and 3 basses. This was a huge undertaking pulled off with great success.

Maruki Orchestra performed Dvorak, Mendelssohn and Tchaikovsky at Albert Hall under of John Gould (conductor).

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