Contact Us

Follow us on Facebook

Concert Reviews - 19 and 20 September 2015 - Classic Trumpet

Sylvester Kroyherr - Published in Bohemian Rhapsody Club online Newsletter.

With an informative pre-concert introduction by the Conductor and Artistic Director Mark Shiell, the programme began with the wind octet, namely the Serenade No.11 by Mozart. The stately first movement established tuneful integration of the ensemble with well versed interplay. From the five movements, the solos by the four instruments were most enjoyable, especially the sweet and mellow oboe. Following the playful fourth movement, the zestful last movement left the audience uplifted and invigorated.

The second item featured the premiere of Harry Sdraulig's Sinfonietta composed specifically for the Zelman Symphony. With a short discordant first movement, the piece flowed into a slow mystical passage that preceded the energetic and haunting third movement – this being the most likeable. The scary but lively last movement was delivered enthusiastically to finish with a bang.

Displaying absolute control, Geoffrey Payne flowed into Haydn's famous Trumpet Concerto in E-flat major. With a lively introduction by the orchestra, Geoffrey delivered a pure and rich sound including a notable and beautiful cadenza. This set the scene for the smooth, warm and lyrical second movement that exposed Haydn's clever exploitation of the trumpet. The lively third movement was well integrated with perfect delivery by the soloist and the orchestra that also included a brilliant cadenza by Geoffrey. Happily, the roar and enthusiasm of the audience prompted a short encore that was absolutely delightful.

The massive Symphony No. 3 Eroica by Beethoven followed the interval with the orchestra setting a commanding and powerful start to the symphony. With throbbing chords, arpeggios and syncopation, the orchestra worked hard to maintain the momentum of the various themes introduced by the composer. However, the sad and majestic second movement flowed smoothly with notable energy and feeling, especially from the strings and oboes. With playful energy, the third movement expressed crispy syncopation and energy, finishing neatly. To bring the symphony to a finale, Mark guided the orchestra with great care and insight to build up to a powerful, well blended and exciting finish.

A very enjoyable concert – congratulations to everyone, including all the volunteers!

SYLVESTER KROYHERR (Musician/Architect) - 21 September 2015

Victoria Elantseva - Published in Bohemian Rhapsody Club online Newsletter.

Ticket to the Moon

Watching them is quite something. Well of course, on reflection I should have fallen in love. And I have. The first thing that strikes one upon hearing the Zelman Orchestra is how at home these performers are with the most intricate pieces of music. It's been more than nine decades since Alberto Zelman founded the ultimate Melbourne Symphony Orchestra. After rocketing to national fame, the orchestra is dashingly growing the grateful audience of its followers across all ages.

The remarkable Mark Shiell, the orchestra's Artistic Director & Principal Conductor appointed in 2009, charges up the public with his phenomenal charisma.

The conductor's cut: Trip to Asia with Sir Simon Rattle. I have watched it several times. In the film, strong parallels are drawn between the demands of the life of an orchestral musician with the immersive and meditative practices of the Zen Arts in Japan. Routine is death for aliveness in music – "I play it this way because I always have".

I think the most important question a musician can ask when looking at a piece of music is WHY? Why did the composer choose those instruments at the moment... There is something both intellectual and mysterious happening...

He has a point. At today's Zelman Symphony they rehearse to discover the essence of fascinating works. Mark has been gambling on experimenters for years and won. During these September concerts he introduced the brilliant Sinfonietta by the extremely talented (and amazingly young!) Melbournian composer Harry Sdraulig, who believes that "the power of the tonality is the most powerful force in music". The few of his works that I have heard prove that he is one of the most inventive composers around.

The Adolph Spivakovsky Award and the VCE Premier's Award winner's music attempts to draw upon the foundation of the western classical music tradition in new and creative ways. Sinfonietta is a quite moody composition, which unites four wonderfully incompatible things: humorous March, placid Nocturne, drastic Aria and an expressive Finale. It was a bit risky to embed such a modern development in the classical tandem of Mozart's Serenade No. 11, Haydn's Trumpet Concert in E-flat major and Beethoven's pathetical Symphony No.3 Eroica. However, being a passionate innovator, Mark has performed a little wonder one more time. The bug had bitten. And the audience was rewarded.

The past September concerts became the hour of triumph for the one of the finest trumpeters, Geoffrey Payne, who has been a member of the Melbourne Symphony Orchestra since 1979 and has been holding the Principal Trumpet position for nineteen years. The trumpet is probably one of the most used instruments in classical music. Its less popular modern cousin, however, has always resided pride of place. Geoffrey has just the right amount of expressiveness and never overwhelms the sometimes intricate orchestral accompaniment. A splendid performance!

I do not like intervals. Most of them are certainly full of deli's crisp and strong coffee smell. I wish I could forbid all the entr'actes, but not this time at Zelman Symphony's performance, because of getting the chance of a brief meeting with Mark, modestly talking to music admirers.

Now I'm waiting for the Russian Dance December eve with Sally Walker. She is definitely a stylish flute player, obviously comfortable with her instrument. Surely, there will be a vivid symbiosis of 'evergreens' – Tchaikovsky and Rachmaninov, but I'm mostly intrigued by the announced Melbourne Premiere of an Elena Kats-Chernin's flute concerto.

And if you need an extra push before taking the dive into the music, heed this marvellous quote from Bette Davis: "Oh, Jerry, don't let's ask for the moon. We have the stars." (Now, Voyager, 1942).

Friends of Zelman

Join free to stay in touch. Receive concert notices, flyers and newsletters. Email or write to Friends of Zelman, PO Box 408, Kew East, 3102.

Printable View
Page last modified on October 11, 2015, at 03:34 PM