Ulster Orchestra: The Charm of the Classical

Ulster Orchestra: The Charm of the Classical

Thursday, 25 November 2021, 7.45pm

Caroline Shaw Entr’acte
Mozart Flute Concerto No.1
Mendelssohn Hensel Overture in C
Schumann Symphony No. 1 Spring


Caroline Shaw’s Entr’acte, inspired by Haydn’s string quartets, opens this concert. It shimmers with resonances of Haydn’s writing while simultaneously sounding wholly modern and fresh.

Adam Walker makes a welcome return to perform Mozart’s Flute Concerto No. 1. A composer who wrote an entire opera about the magical capability of the flute to transform human emotions was only ever likely to write wonderful music for the instrument and this concerto, full of delightful melodies and graceful virtuosity more than lives up to expectation.

Fanny Mendelssohn Hensel was every bit as gifted a musician and composer as her brother, Felix. Overture in C is her only work scored for full orchestra and its fleet-footed melody dances through the orchestra, passed from lush strings to gloriously expressive woodwind. We close with Schumann’s First Symphony, his ‘summons to awakening’ that sparkles and blazes with the joy of spring and earns the piece its nickname. A brass fanfare heralds ‘the beginning of spring’ and the piece reminds us of the tumultuousness of the season, before closing in a burst of musical sunshine.

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