REVIEW / CONCERT
YONG SIEW TOH CONSERVATORY ORCHESTRA SERIES: MASAAKI SUZUKI CONDUCTS PULCINELLA
Masaaki Suzuki (conductor),
Ryo Terakado (visitor concertmaster),
Yong Siew Toh Chamber Ensemble
Yong Siew Toh Conservatory
Orchestra Conservatory Concert Hall
Renowned conductor and returning Ong Teng Cheong Professor in Music on the Yong Siew Toh Conservatory of Music Masaaki Suzuki delivered a masterclass in programming that will have delighted music students and avid concertgoers alike.
Themed round Stravinsky’s pioneering neo-classical music for the ballet, Pulcinella, Suzuki directed a primary half that consisted of the works Stravinsky used for his composition, performed on unique devices.
The opening work was the Concerto Grosso Op. 6, No. 7 by Arcangelo Corelli, that includes college students Zhang Yuchen and Arisa Ikeda (violins) and Kim Soyoung (cello) within the solo (“concertante”) components. Suzuki carried out this work, together with his long-time collaborator, baroque violinist Ryo Terakado, main the conservatory’s chamber ensemble.
Suzuki’s natural course, his excellent tempo and the eye paid to shaping the orchestral traces made for a delightfully flowing efficiency. Terakado was the consummate ensemble chief, displaying the scholars how enjoying with lower-tensioned baroque bows and intestine strings can nonetheless be extremely expressive and energetic.
Zhang and Ikeda, who, like the opposite string gamers on the conservatory, will not be baroque devices specialists, dealt with their technical components with ease. Zhang had the harder time, with intonation points that prevailed by means of the Wassenaer concerto the place he as soon as once more partnered Ikeda. By this time, although, Ikeda appeared extra comfy together with her instrument and was enjoying fluently.
A collection of smaller-scale works adopted. Mervyn Lee’s (harpsichord) efficiency of the Gavotta Theme And Variations by Carlo Ignazio Monza was barely tense, however extremely creditable. In distinction, he appeared most snug whereas enjoying the harpsichord continuo components.
YST school Leslie Tan was a fantastic companion to Lee on bass continuo, as was Jamshid Saydikarimov, who performed baroque cello and, later, the fashionable cello with nice panache and advantageous musicianship.
The music for Pulcinella was carried out by the bigger Conservatory Orchestra on trendy devices, with YST voice college students Li Wei-Wei (soprano), Baek Jongwoo (tenor) and Gerard Lim (baritone). For this work, Ikeda was a most ready concertmaster, offering regular management and polished solos.
The ensemble was extremely aware of Suzuki’s course, which captured the essence of the composer’s intelligent modernist re-interpretation of baroque themes.
In the distinguished vocal sections of the work, soprano Li’s projection and intonation have been spectacular and baritone Lim sang with nice expressiveness and characterisation.
Instrumental solos additionally abound in Stravinsky’s writing. The winds did very properly within the trendy Gavotte and variations, but it surely was the raucous solos of Jiarajet Tawornsiri (trombone) and Edmund Song (double bass) that have been excellent.
Moving from baroque devices tuned at a decrease pitch to the fashionable devices within the second half was by no means going to be completely smooth-sailing.
As a night of musical exploration and pleasure, Suzuki’s journey from the baroque to the neo-classical was illuminating and most entertaining.