London Mozart Players and Howard Shelley (piano/conductor)
Prokofiev Symphony No. 1 in D major, Op. 25 ‘Classical’
Mozart Piano Concerto No. 25 in C major, K503
Delius On Hearing the First Cuckoo in Spring
Haydn Symphony No. 104 in D major, ‘London’
Howard Shelley, world-renowned pianist and Conductor Laureate of the London Mozart Players, brings this wonderful orchestra, the UK’s longest established chamber orchestra, to Dublin for a special concert as part of the orchestra’s 70th birthday celebrations. He will perform in the dual role of conductor and soloist.
Late masterpieces by Mozart and his revered older contemporary Haydn feature along with Prokofiev’s witty and affectionate tribute to the classical style: ‘a symphony as Mozart or Haydn might have written it…had either one of them been my contemporary…’ as young Prokofiev put it.
The Mozart concerto in C is one of the last three concertos Mozart wrote at the height of his maturity, with a first movement of almost Beethovenian grandeur. Haydn’s London symphonies represent some of his greatest achievements, with No. 104 being the fitting finale and the last symphony he ever wrote.
The cuckoo in this classical nest is the evocative tone poem On Hearing the First Cuckoo in Spring by Delius. Otherwise described as a ‘mood picture for small orchestra’, the piece imitates the natural sounds of the cuckoo which can be heard by the oboe, strings and clarinet. So whilst the literal connection to our ‘Beethoven: Before and After’ strand across the season is Mozart and Haydn, there is more than an echo of Beethoven’s Pastoral Symphony here.