Norfolk Symphony Orchestra, King's Lynn

ALISON CROOSE It was very fitting that the orchestra should conclude its season with a symphony entitled "The Great" – for that adjective aptly summed up the entertainment.

ALISON CROOSE

It was very fitting that the orchestra should conclude its season with a symphony entitled "The Great" – for that adjective aptly summed up the entertainment.

It also described the quality of the concerts throughout the NSO's 31st season, and despite the demands of the programme the orchestra excelled itself.

Schubert's ninth symphony is "great" in every sense, not least its demanding 50 minutes' duration. The first three movements afford numerous symphonic delights, but it is the finale which turns it into a marathon.

The repetitive three-note theme, interspersed with reminders of earlier melodies, build up to a frantic pace. But musical director James Stobart's control of the orchestra ensured the work did not overpower the musicians and enabled the solo contributions of the oboe and flute to shine through.

As always, the orchestra's infectious enthusiasm was shared with the audience, well-illustrated in another "great" aspect of the concert – the appearance of Richard Harwood as soloist in Dvorak's Cello Concerto.

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Having witnessed the 22-year-old's virtuosity it is no surprise to learn he is gaining world-wide renown. His performance was a delight.

t The Norfolk Symphony Orchestra were performing at King's Lynn Corn Exchange.

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