Wednesday, October 20

Brighton Festival – lgar Cello Concerto & There was A Child

- May 23, 2011

Sadly for the soloist, orchestra and audience, this polished performance of one of the most moving works of British composition was tainted by the presence in the auditorium of very young and noisy children. The crying and chatter was incredibly distracting and the people involved seemed oblivious to the fact that it seemed inappropriate for them to stay. Fortunately by the second half the problem had been resolved and we were able to enjoy Jonathan Dove’s oratorio celebrating the short life of a young boy in which Brighton Festival Chorus were given full reign to do what they do best. Soloists Joan Rodgers and Ben Johnston gave great performances too and the Brighton Festival Youth Choir were particularly good. The work itself is multi layered and complex, at times insistent, at others gentle and simplistic. Dove uses a variety of texts about childhood from birth to, in this case a sadly premature demise. Moving stuff but never mawkish, far more celebratory. A thrilling experience.

Concert Hall, Brighton Dome, 22 May

Rating: ★★★★☆
Andrew Kay

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