As part of International Orchestra Season the Usher Hall in Edinburgh have programmed some great classical Sunday afternoon concerts including the Tchaikovsky Symphony Orchestra, which I had the pleasure of being invited to. A captivating, cathartic way to spend a weekend afternoon, the Usher Hall, with the accompaniment of Jennifer Pike and orchestra infallibly paying homage to Russia’s best-loved composer.
Performed in one of Edinburgh’s most prestigious venues, the Usher Hall, which first opened its doors in 1896, and hosts a whole range of national and foreign orchestras, renowned for its rich programme, the atmosphere is more than fitting. Beguiling and breathtaking in its size, the orchestra as well as the building overwhelm the crowd that very afternoon, as they inhale the talent that fills the concert hall.
From despair to elation, we experienced a full breadth of emotions with the violin concertos and orchestral drama. The high performance of Dante inspired Francesca da Rimini was succeeded by one of most poetic of all violin concertos, in which the orchestra was joined by award-winning Jennifer Pike, concluding with richly scored Symphony No 5 bringing concert tow thrilling close.
Conducted by Russia’s Vladimir Fedoseyev, there is a sense of authenticity to this presentation, as from 1974 he was artistic director and chief conductor of the Tchaikovsky Symphony Orchestra of Moscow Radio 1974-1999. Being the recipient of the Glinka State Prize of the RSFSR, the Order “For Labor Valor”, and a distinction as a ‘Dweller of the siege of Leningrad, there is a standard to anticipate with this Sunday recital and we are not left wanting.
Joined by Jennifer Pike, violinist, who was the BBC’s Young Musician of the Year back in 2002, this benchmark is maintained throughout and the crowd are in awe of her dazzling flair, and stunning solo piece. After this afternoon recital of classical music, I would urge nothing more for the residents of Edinburgh to do than hit the Usher Hall at 3pm for a whole host of classical concerts.