Norwich Philharmonic Orchestra
CHRISTOPHER SMITH St Andrew's Hall, Norwich
St Andrew's Hall, Norwich
A large audience packed St Andrew's Hall for an exhilarating concert by the Norwich Philharmonic Orchestra, conducted on this occasion by Andrew Fardell and led by Fiona Hutchins. The Flying Dutchman overture made immediate impact with waves of passion. Next came Mozart's ever-popular clarinet concerto. Sarah Williamson was the soloist, blonde in her black dress and with a ready smile until she turned to the serious matter of putting every effort and every last drop of breath into her accomplished, meticulously prepared performance. The Planets Suite offered an enlarged orchestra majestic opportunities for showing its prowess, with Tim Patient at the organ assuring the foundations. Imperious brass and pounding percussion brought passion to Holst's vivid score, though the strings could have done with richer tone in the more meditative sections.