Ravel’s jazz infused Piano Concerto certainly was brought to larger than life with the soloist Simone Dinnerstein, whom is a household name with her interpretations of Bach. Her fingers feverishly danced on the keys, every note a pearl. Her style was definitely different and distinct from other classical musicians, being more melodic than many. Spontaneous jingles of percussion and pizzicato strings definitely add to the dreamy and outgoing feeling of the melody.
Many great artists of our time wrote the most romantically moving scores or painted the most emotionally expressive pieces. A few of them, however, suffered great fits of depression and mania. One of those artists was Tchaikovsky. Tchaikovsky’s extraordinary talent was accompanied by terrible depressive episodes. His death, after the first nine days of the premiere of his Sixth Symphony – the very one I was able to listen to! – was rumoured to be one of suicide.
At a very young age he stormed out of a party, feeling ill after hearing piano music, and when asked what was the matter by his mother, he replied the music playing his head did not stop. But even during his time he was considered one of the greatest musicians. In the 1800s, critics called him a “modern music lord”.
The Calgary Philharmonic Orchestra (CPO), joined by the extremely talented piano soloist Simone Dinnerstein, shook the rafters of the great Jack Singer concert hall in their very recent performance of Tchaikovsky’s Symphony No.6, “Pathetique” and Ravel’s Piano Concerto. The CPO is the proud winner of the 2011 White Hat Award for Top Attraction – and for good reason! With high calibre musicians that are world class, you simply are in for a deeply, deeply exhilarating and satisfying time! I highly recommend that you take your date to a concert performed by the CPO, because dinner and hearing these phenomenal artists is a recipe for the perfect night!
The bill for the performance opened up with Borodin’s Prince Igor: Polovtsian Dances. This is a song you need to go out and hear, and along with Calgary Philharmonic Chorus, it’s amazing! The context of the song is set with the Russian prince Igor and a barbaric battle with Konchak, the leader of an Eastern Tribe, the Polovtsians. Regal and grand, this song definitely borrows from traditional Russian folk songs, and makes you want to get up and dance. The feeling I get when listening to the CPO’s performance of this song is of stunning beauty. The low, melodic mood of the piece reflects the barbaric battle between the Russians and the Polovtsians, the melancholy of the Polovtsians leader, with many highs illustrating the epic glory and strength.
Tchaikovsky’s Symphony No.6, “Pathetique” was extraordinarily epic and emotionally devastating. This piece adds a little bit of surprise and the familiar grandiosity of the whole orchestra’s coming together, forte, for an amazing overture of crashing cymbals and drums. Usually signalling the end of a movement, the whole audience cried “Bravo!” for the incredible and overwhelming dynamism from the stage, this march to the finish but were taken back quickly. The movement continued into a dark and slow finale, sinking back into the depths of darkness.
There is seriously no equal experience to listening to the music of a world class orchestra LIVE! Thanks so much to the Calgary Philharmonic Orchestra for providing me the opportunity to experience the amazing and emotionally stunning music of the CPO! Come one and all, young or old, single or on a date, you are sure to have a good time!