Monday, March 08, 2010

Orchestra of St John's concert

8 March 2010

We were at Kings Place in London on Saturday for a concert by the Orchestra of St John's. The programme included 'Cantata No 51' by J S Bach, featuring the excellent young soprano Louise Wayman, and Haydn's 'Symphony No.44 - Trauer'. And it was very interesting to hear Handel's 'The Arrival of the Queen of Sheba' contrasted with Alec Roth's 'Departure of the Queen of Sheba'. Written in 1999, Roth's work uses material from the familiar Handel piece to create a beautifully moving wordless dialogue between the Queen (oboe) and King Solomon (cor anglais). It's a lovely, gently romantic piece of music and it was great to see the composer in the audience on Saturday. The small Orchestra of St John's (featuring only 19 players at this concert) were very impressive: tight, clear and precise, demonstrating how exciting classical music can be.

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