Back by popular demand for the 15th year running (excluding one notable exception in 2020!) the Amadeus Orchestra return to Exeter Cathedral for their annual summer concert with a sizzling selection of orchestral greats from the 19th and 20th centuries. Stravinsky’s Firebird Suite from 1919 is a distillation of all the much longer ballet written for the 1910 Paris season of Sergei Diaghilev’s Ballets Russes which catapulted him to international stardom.
The Piano Concerto No. 2 in G minor by Camille Saint-Saëns was composed in 1868 and is probably Saint-Saëns’ most popular piano concerto. The capricious changes in style provoked Zygmunt Stojowski to quip that it “begins with Bach and ends with Offenbach.”
The original version of Prokofiev’s Romeo and Juliet provoked controversy among Soviet cultural officials as, contrary to Shakespeare, this one had a happy ending! There was a great fear at that time in the theatre world in the aftermath of Pravda’s editorials that criticised Shostakovich and other “degenerate modernists”. These two difficulties led to a postponement of the premiere of what has now become one of the world’s most loved ballets.
Stravinsky: Firebird Suite
Saint-Saëns: Piano Concerto No.2
Prokofiev: Romeo and Juliet Suite 2
Conductor: Philip Mackenzie
Piano: Hiew Tzejia
New piece added – Mussorgsky: The Great Gate of Kyiv (arr. Julian Kershaw)