The Bournemouth Symphony Orchestra marked its long-overdue return to the Guildhall with a delightful mix of classical and neo-classical works, under the inspired direction of Frank Zielhorst.
Originally for piano, Ravel’s ravishing orchestration of his Le Tombeau de Couperin presents a myriad of delicate orchestral colours in a texture appropriately light enough to allow every subtlety and nuance to shine through. Frank Zielhorst managed his resources to perfection, in a performance which really highlighted the orchestra’s superb strings and woodwind.
French cellist Jean-Guihen Queyras proved an absolutely outstanding soloist in Haydn’s C major concerto. Clearly loving every single note of the score, his perfect articulation and technical assurance, allied to a wonderfully rich tone especially in the high register, made for a totally mesmerising and engaging performance from start to finish.
Beethoven’s Second Symphony again confirmed the orchestra’s abundant talents in each section, with an idiomatic and eminently spirited reading, that clearly the players and conductor were enjoying as much as the audience.
Introducing the concert, Zielhorst commented on just how long it had been since the orchestra had previously played in the venue, and how pleased they all were to be back here. If the reception from the packed audience, and the excited comments overheard in the hall are anything to go by, then clearly Plymouth’s classical-music aficionados definitely want them back – and soon.
image: Bournemouth Symphony Orchestra and Jean-Guihen Queyras (inset)
PHILIP R BUTTALL