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Edinburgh City Orchestra – Symphony Concert
November 26, 2022 @ 7:30 pm - 9:30 pm
The Edinburgh City Orchestra and conductor Peter Le Tissier return to perform a programme featuring three composers whose names are etched deep into the heart of the romantic period of European music.
The orchestra are joined by Colombian Pianist Maurizio Reyes for a performance of Rachmaninov’s Piano Concerto no. 2 in C Minor. Made famous by its heartbreaking central slow movement, the concerto was the product of many years of compositional labour after the disastrous performance of Rachmaninov’s first Symphony in 1897. After years without writing music and a serious consideration of retiring from performance and composition entirely, Rachmaninov was able to produce this stunning concerto across 1901-1902. Featuring gorgeous melodies in both orchestra and piano, the concerto has been popular ever since its first performance.
Alongside this, the orchestra performs the prelude to Wagner’s Die Meistersinger von Nürnberg. A drama that on face value deals with the townsfolk of Nuremberg preparing for their summer singing contest, but on closer inspection is a thorough interrogation of society’s attitudes to love, community, and artistic revolution. Wagner’s use of metaphor is at its peak in this mature work, and the prelude has been a very succcessful concert piece since even before the opera’s first performance.
Finally, the orchestra performs Tchaikovsky’s final symphony (and, indeed, final work), the Pathétique Symphony no. 6 in B minor. Opening and closing in murky darkness, with allusions scattered to both Beethoven’s Pathétique piano sonata and Wagner’s Tristan und Isolde, Tchaikovsky takes the listener on a typically brilliant journey featuring soaring peaks alongside crushing blows.