Saturday, May 20, 2017

TSO: Thursday, May 4 2017

TSO warming up
The concert today is showcasing some of the music the Toronto Symphony Orchestra (TSO), will be playing on their tour of Israel and Europe, this year.

Iris, by Jordan Pal (2016), is called an iridescent tribute to the limitless scope of nature's creativity. Pal states that his work attempts to evoke the boundless, infinite, and ever-changing splendour of nature. This first piece in today's concert, was commissioned by the Toronto Symphony Orchestra (TSO). It is highly original, and coaxes unusual sounds from the orchestra.

Piano Concerto in A Minor, Op 54, by Robert Schuman (1841), continued the first half of the concert. Highly romantic, the concerto is original in concepts, and poetic rather than bravura. The soloist, Jan Lisiecki, is a young Canadian performer, and is noted for his poetic sensibility. This made him the ideal person to accompany the TSO in this piece. It was a delight to listen to the international standard orchestra blend with the beautiful performance of the pianist, in this lovely concerto. Jan Lisiecki showed his star quality, and added to his already illustrious career.

Concerto for Orchestra (1944), by Bela Bartok, was composed whilst he lived in New York City, USA. He died in 1945, and this piece seems to sum up the creative development of its creator. It is pluralistic, in that it is traditional yet experimental, uses folk music yet uses early modernism and neo-classicism. Bartok saw his finale of this piece as a "life assertion." It is almost as if this composition is Bela Batrok's "signing off", as he died so soon afterwards. Fascinating end to a lovely afternoon concert.

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