Leading orchestra to light up Shenzhen concert hall

2008-06-05 03:48:40 GMT       2008-06-05 11:48:40 (Beijing Time)       Shenzhen Daily

THE BBC Scottish Symphony Orchestra (SSO), a world leading orchestra from the British Isles, will perform two concerts at the Shenzhen Concert Hall this week.

Conducted by German-born Christoph Konig, the program for tonight includes well-known classics like Beethoven’s “Symphony No.7 in A Major,” “Violin Concerto in D Minor” by Sibelius and Mendelssohn’s “Violin Concerto in E Minor.” The orchestra will also present a piece by British composer Edward McGuire featuring Chinese themes.

Friday’s program aims to attract a more mature audience with its theme of romance. It will keep “Violin Concerto in D Minor” by Sibelius, but include lesser-known works with a distinctly Scottish flavor as well. Mendelssohn’s “Symphony No.3 in A Minor,” also known as “Scottish,” will present through music the striking landscape of Scotland. Edward Elgar’s “Froissart” conjures images of love in the era of the knights. “Serenade in E Minor,” another piece by the British icon, was a gift of love to his wife.

In the middle of a Chinese tour, the 90-member-strong BBC SSO was awarded the Best Orchestra in 2002 by the British Royal Philharmonic Society.

Konig, a guest conductor with several European orchestras, has been praised for his imaginative programing and his very unique and often surprising way of combining conventional repertoire with contemporary works to produce exciting concerts and recordings. He will begin a three-year term as the principal conductor of the National Orchestra of Porto later this year.

Another star on this tour is 21-year-old violinist Nicola Benedetti.

Born into a businessman’s family in West Kilbride, Scotland, Benedetti began to take violin lessons at 4, under the influence of her elder sister.

By the age of 9, she had already passed the eight grades of musical examinations, and a year later, began to study at the Yehudi Menuhin School for young musicians under Menuhin and Natasha Boyarskaya in rural Surrey, England.

Named BBC’s Young Musician of the Year in 2004, she has captivated audiences and critics with her performances and poise. Benedetti plays an Earl Spencer Stradivarius violin.

The violinist said she loved the subtlety of music. “I prefer players who draw you into their interpretations rather than the ‘in your face’ variety,” she was once quoted by the Daily Telegraph as saying.

Among contemporary masters, she likes Pinchas Zukerman, Christian Tetzlaff and Thomas Zehetmair.

I have comments _COUNT_