The evening starts off with a fantastic, bouncing, and subtly wry Mephisto Waltz by Franz Liszt. This is a great piece to kick off a night with its jazzy dance tone, vigor, strong theme, and refusal to lose the listener. It is a piece that grabs ones attention and strangleholds it through the duration.
The next piece is far more complex, but rich, epic, and powerful; it is Prokofiev’s Symphony No.3. Listening to Prokofiev can truly be challenging, however watching him be performed is a treat beyond treats. It’s seeped in eeriness, command, and passion. To make a comparison, it reminds me of a good mythological tale. There’s a bit of adventure, terror, romance, but in the end no matter how your emotions have been played, you know it was pure fun, and that is the case with Symphony No.3 as well; it is pure fun.
The final piece of the evening is Tchaikovsky’s epic Piano Concerto No.1. For four years I have been waiting for SSO to perform this piece, and they really gave it the honor it deserved. Watching the guest pianist Stephen Hugh is absolutely beautiful. He works the piano a grace and fluidity which greatly complements the intense –and sometimes bombastic- threshold of the concerto’s breathtaking tonal oeuvre.
From the blasting horns and unforgettable theme for the first movements brass, to the neck break finger work of the piano, this weekend at the symphony is rocking pretty hardcore with their lineup, and have created rollercoaster evening of awesome pieces
Tchaikovsky Piano Concerto #1
Through November 14