Sunday 06 October 2024, 3pm

Roderick Dunk, Conductor
Freddy Kempf, Piano

GLINKA Russlan and Ludmilla Overture

GRIEG Piano Concerto in A minor, Op. 16

ELGAR Symphony No. 1 in A flat major, Op. 55

Photo: Sara Porter

The opening concert of the RTWSO’s 2024/25 season gets under way with the ever popular, and certainly rousing, overture to Russlan and Ludmilla by Glinka. It is fast and furious and gives all sections of the orchestra a great workout!

Who cannot resist having the words “All the right notes but not necessarily in the right order’”coming to mind when recalling the sketch in the 1971 Morecambe & Wise Christmas Show with André Previn (Mr Preview)? It relates of course to Eric Morecambe’s unique interpretation of the opening of Grieg’s Piano Concerto. However, what can be assured in this performance of the concerto, with RTWSO favourite Freddy Kempf as soloist – he has played with the RTWSO on at least ten occasions – is that all the right notes will be played in the right order! Quiz trivia: Grieg’s Piano Concerto was the first piano concerto ever to be recorded – in 1909 with pianist Wilhelm Backhaus.

It is difficult to appreciate when listening to his music that Sir Edward Elgar was, allegedly, mostly self-taught as a composer and, like Brahms, it took him many years to compose a symphony. His Symphony No. 1 which ends this first concert was a resounding success at its premiere and has been a staple of the orchestral repertoire ever since.