Australian Chamber Orchestra, Snape

MICHAEL DRAKE Straight from the BBC Proms, part of an extensive European tour and after appearing on Radio 4's arts programme Front Row, Richard Tognetti led his innovative orchestra to the Snape Proms.

MICHAEL DRAKE

Straight from the BBC Proms, part of an extensive European tour and after appearing on Radio 4's arts programme Front Row, Richard Tognetti led his innovative orchestra to the Snape Proms last night with vitality, from the moment all 17 members set foot on the stage and Australian composer Carl Vine's String Quartet No 3, revised for string orchestra, was given its British premiere with exciting sound and execution from the opening pizzicato to the soulful solos.

Tognetti has taken two other string quartets with a named link to demonstrate how the genre can be developed and he directed this vibrant ensemble first in Janacek's Kreutzer Sonata, and then in Beethoven's Sonata for violin and piano (the Kreutzer). The latter particularly was given an extra dimension as it became a virtual full orchestral sonata with Tognetti himself leaning, swaying and dancing into the solo violin part with the whole orchestra giving rich colouring, wonderful tone and overall exuberance.

Listening to the extraordinary ACO was an educational experience which I could get used to – as could many others, after this performance.


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