Pitch Perfect

The Opening Concert of this year’s Edinburgh International Festival featured Haydn’s Symphony No 94 in G major – ‘The Surprise’ – and Mendelssohn’s Symphony No 2 Lobgesang Op 52.

Pablo Heras-Casado is a young, very vigorous conductor, whose confidence and accuracy brought out the best in the players and singers. He was born in Granada and is currently Principal Conductor of the Orchestra of St Luke’s in New York, as well as Principal Guest Conductor of the Teatro Real Madrid.

The opening rendition of Joseph Haydn’s ‘Surprise Symphony’ set the bar high for the evening. It was performed with great assurance vigour by the Scottish Chamber Orchestra and was  spell-binding.

Mendelssohn’s L Lobgesan Op 52, his second symphony, brought together not only assured playing of the orchestra but also soloists sopranos, Emma Bell and Dorothea Roschmann, with tenor, Werner Gura. The capacity audience was then treated to beautiful melodic singing by the soloists and the Edinburgh Festival Chorus, under Choir Master Christopher Bell, as well as the added treat of accompaniment on the renowned Usher Hall organ provided by Stuart Hope.

The performance was sung in German with English surtitles. Embracing a number of Psalms for example 33, 145, 107, 56, 40 and other Biblical extracts the assured singing held the audience entranced and most appreciative.

It’s very fitting that the Opening Concert in this 70th anniversary year of the Festival should repeat the first work – Haydn’s Symphony 4 – which began the 1947 concert at the first Edinburgh International Festival.


Published by

Christine Richard OBE FRSA

http://www.lothianlife.co.uk/wp-content/uploads/Christine.jpg Christine has over 25 years' experience in public life in Scotland in the fields of politics, education, public relations and charity work. For 12 years she served on the City of Edinburgh District Council and was her Group's leader for 4 years. She is a Fellow of the Royal Society of Arts. In 1992 she was made an OBE. Christine is a member of the Board of The Friends of the Royal Scottish Academy. She has just completed six years on the Board of The Edinburgh International Festival. Christine's business experience has covered the fields of theatre, economic development, science, coal mining, education and training. She has held a number of non-executive directorships in these disciplines. She is a trained and experienced personal relationships counsellor and a business and personal mentor. In 2005 Christine established Christine Richard Associates who undertake Event Management and Public Relations as well as company and individual profiling. She coordinated the 'Yes to Edinburgh' campaign on congestion charging in Edinburgh. ten years ago Christine co-founded West Lothian Women in Business, which is a network for women who are self-employed and also for women managers. Christine has now stepped down from the Chair of this thriving organisation. For 5 years Christine was a magistrate in the District Court. She was also a member of the Secretary of State's Advisory Committee on the appointment of Justices of the Peace. She has been an adviser to Government in various areas of policy, including health, local government and education. Christine is a trained and experienced radio and television broadcaster and writer as well as an entertaining and accomplished speaker. She has a wealth of topics on which she is invited to speak. These range from witty after lunch and after dinner speaking to the more serious topics of the economy, health, education, enterprise, the Powers of the Mind and Life/work balance. She writes reviews and articles for lifestyle magazine, Lothian Life. She took part as a contestant in an ITV gourmet TV show, Chef V Britain, challenging TV chef Gino D'Acampo to cook her signature dish, Posh Cottage Pie. Currently Christine is a member of the Goodison Group in Scotland and Scotland's Futures. Also she is involved in the group Changing the Chemistry of Scottish Boards. Her first novel, Whitewalls, a modern Scottish family saga has been published by New Generation Publishing and is available on all internet books siets and from libraries. She is writing a sequel Autumn at Whitewalls. Her leisure interests include her family, literature, music, theatre, food, wine and horse racing. She is a member of a racing syndicate, which has two horses in training.

One thought on “Pitch Perfect”

  1. Thank you for this excellent review! It was a wonderful feel-good concert, which the conductor and orchestra obviously enjoyed as well. A fitting start to this 70th anniversary!

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