A
 
Web www.artsmart.co.za
A R T S M A R T
arts news from kwazulu-natal

music
www.artsmart.co.za
enquiries@artsmart.co.za
 A current news
crafts - dance - drama - film & tv - literature
music - supper theatre - visual arts
miscellaneous news - festivals
letters to the editor
home page
archives A
crafts - dance - drama - film & tv - literature
music - supper theatre - visual arts
miscellaneous news - festivals
 

NB: as of 23 September 2008, all new artSMart articles are being published on the site news.artsmart.co.za.

KZNPO CONCERT: 9 OCTOBER 2003 (article first published : 2003-10-12)

A beautiful young Czech pianist named Jitka Cechova received an ovation for her brilliant performance of Grieg’s Piano Concerto in A minor at this concert in the Durban City Hall. The concerto is one of the best-known pieces in the entire repertoire, and after 134 years and tens of thousands of performances it must be difficult to find anything new to say about it. But the tall and willow Jitka Cechova did indeed find new insights into this well-loved work, especially in the fine first movement cadenza, in the slow movement, and in the lyrical second subject of the finale.

She has an exemplary technique but she also has poise and control and knows the value of the expressive pause. It was a most satisfying performance and the prolonged applause at the end brought forth an encore, one of Domenico Scarlatti’s 550 short harpsichord sonatas, a well-known one in C major.

The orchestra, under the baton of the Chinese conductor En Chao, opened with Sibelius’s Valse Triste, which is much played but still retains its melancholy charm. And after the Grieg came a massive performance of a massive work, Shostakovich’s Symphony No. 5 in D minor . This is “modern” music, even though it was written 66 years ago, but it is approachable for ordinary listeners, with many memorable moments in the taut and tragic first movement, the ineffably sad slow movement, and the blazing finale.

The orchestra were in top form. The conductor must obviously have taken great care in preparing this work for the concert, and he conducted the 45-minute symphony without a score, a considerable feat of memory and concentration. Altogether, a tour de force. - Michael Green




 A current news
crafts - dance - drama - film & tv - literature
music - supper theatre - visual arts
miscellaneous news - festivals
letters to the editor
home page
archives A
crafts - dance - drama - film & tv - literature
music - supper theatre - visual arts
miscellaneous news - festivals
a co-production by caroline smart services and .durbanet. site credits
copyright © subsists in this page. all rights reserved. [ edit ] copyright details  artsmart