Noble Elgar

Noble Elgar Adelaide Symphony Orchestra 2016Adelaide Symphony Orchestra. Adelaide Town Hall. 1 Apr 2016


The programme may have been named in honor of Elgar, but Mozart’s Sinfonia Concertante for Violin, Viola and Orchestra, K364 was the highlight of the evening and the bacon was brought home by our very own Natsuko Yoshimoto and Imants Larsens on violin and viola respectively.


In a word, they were superb.


The Sinfonia is a challenging work to interpret, and it rewards a patiently constructed dialogue between the violin and viola in contrast to each soloist abandoning themselves to self-regarding introspection. Yoshimoto and Larsens built their partnership beautifully and combined the voices of their instruments exquisitely. The depth of their mutual understanding was palpable. Yoshimoto almost austere, Larsens almost overelaborating. One the seducer, the other almost tempted. Both in control at all times and ever so gentle with Mozart’s delicate material. At the conclusion, Yoshimoto delicately kissed Larsens, her husband, fully on the mouth and they both beamed radiant smiles at the enthusiastic audience.


Guest conductor Mark Wigglesworth led the orchestra in an emphatic performance of Elgar’s Symphony No.1 in A flat, Op 55. It is written on a grand scale but, like the Mozart, it demands attention to detail. It is a complex work, almost over-written, and its numerous meter, dynamic and tempo changes need to be handled with care to allow the subtlety in the composition to come to the fore. At times, Wigglesworth overplayed the dynamics and consequently stretched the acoustics of the Adelaide Town Hall to its very limits, but he managed to lay bare the inner detail of the symphony. The result was something very English, very noble.


Kym Clayton


When: 1 Apr

Where: Adelaide Town Hall

Bookings: Closed

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