Philharmonic Orchestra

For the final concert of the 2019 Brighton Festival Season we were treated to Beethoven’s Triple concerto for violin, cello, piano ands orchestra and what a delight it was, Beethoven at his most playful delivered by a brilliant orchestra and three very fine soloists. Pablo Hernán Benedi’s emphatic violin, full of energy balanced with the lightest of touches, Michael Petrov’s cello soaringly beautiful and intense and handling the complex score with total ease and Erdem Misirlilioglu’s piano playing a delicate triumph. The combination of Trio Isimsiz with the Philharmonia was a perfect fit.

In the second half the orchestra were joined by the Brighton Festival Chorus, a choir on absolute top form delivering Tippet’s A Child Of Our Time with an air of confidence and sensitivity. Conductor Roderick Cox had choir, chorus and soloists in the palms of his elegant hands and the whole simply moved along with both ease and power. Soprano Gweneth Ann Rand gave an impressively passionate account, full of drama and heart. Mezzo Ronnita Miller’s voice was rich and soothing and bass-baritone Jonathan Lemalu was powerful and rounded. Tenor Noah Stewarts fine voice had that purity of time that worked was as the voice of the young man and was only once lost to a rather strident horn passage, otherwise he soared across the orchestra with ease.

Tippett’s work is however less than perfect, the best parts sublime but the libretto lacks poetry or a clear enough narrative thread. But despite this the evening was a resounding success and a fine end to another excellent festival season.

Dome Concert Hall

26 May

Andrew Kay

Rating: ★★★★½

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