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Lamb & Hayward Masterworks Pathetique


Sat 21 Jul 2012, 7:30pm–9:30pm

Where: Aurora Centre for the Performing Arts, Cnr Greers Rd and Memorial Ave, Burnside, Christchurch

Restrictions: All Ages

Ticket Information:

  • Adult A Reserve: $40.00
  • Adult B Reserve: $30.00
  • Child: $10.00
  • Additional fees may apply

Tom Woods: conductor
Andrea Lam: piano

Sibelius - King Kristian ll Suite
Grieg - Piano Concerto in A minor
Tchaikovsky - Symphony No 6, Pathetique

Sibelius displays his lighter side with this concert suite adapted from his incidental music to a play written by a friend Adolf Paul. The plays central character is Kristian 11, King of Denmark, Sweden and Norway, the theme – the monarch's love for a Dutch girl. While the play has been largely forgotten, Sibelius's music, with its evocation of a larger-than-life 17th century Scandinavian monarch has remained a popular performance piece.

The opening bars of Grieg's only concerto need, as they say, no introduction. It's been the delight of audiences from the day it was first performed in 1868 – a sturdy, no-nonsense work which still tweaks the emotions. Young Edvard was 24 years old when he composed a work which reflected the rising tide of Norwegian nationalism and the influence of Norwegian folk music on his style. Grieg revised the concerto no less than seven times, subtly editing and amending its flow. The final version was completed a few weeks before his death in 1907 and there is every indication of his affection for the work.

Lauded for her "melting lyricism, filigree touch and spirited eloquence" (The Australian) and pronounced a "real talent" (Wall Street Journal), we are delighted Australian pianist Andrea Lam will be performing with the orchestra.

Let's get one thing clear – Tchaikovsky's sixth symphony has nothing to do with pity, grief or overwhelming gloom. The work's title is a French interpretation of the original Russian Pateticeskaja meaning passionate or emotional. Despite the legends which encrust it, it is definitely not a musical suicide note but a composition which explores the hand of fate on human existence, ending on a note of optimism. Tchaikovsky's last completed symphony was written in 1893 and premiered in October the same year with the composer conducting. Nine days later he was dead. Dedicated to his nephew, this powerful work deals with life's struggles and the ultimate triumph of the human spirit. This is Tchaikovsky at his very best – a flow of inspired melody and lyricism.

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