The first half of the evening is a trumpet concerto by the conductor of the evening, Guido Mancusi. The melodiousness and virtuosity of the piece easily reminds one of Hummel’s trumpet concertos or Arban’s The Carnival of Venice. The final movement is a real bravura for the soloist, accompanied by a light, virtuoso orchestral material.
Der Rosenkavalier (The Knight of the Rose) is an opera by Richard Strauss, based on a libretto by Hugo von Hofmannsthal, which evokes a bygone era (the time of Maria Theresa) with a touch of nostalgia, a bitter and sometimes impish humour. Strauss was a master of orchestration, and his skillfulness is reflected in the sumptuous colours of the orchestral sound and the virtuosic and enjoyable melodies. This evening, the audience will hear a version of the Rosenkavalier Suite.
The second half of the evening features Bruckner’s Symphony No. 6, which the composer never heard in its entirety in his lifetime, as only the two middle movements were played at the 1883 première, when the Vienna Philharmonic refused to perform the complete work due to its extremely difficult nature. It still remains the least frequently performed piece in the Bruckner repertoire, although Bruckner himself considered it to be his most unpretentious work, its lighter tone and translucent orchestration making it more accessible to the audience. According to English composer Robert Simpson, “the symphony’s themes are extremely expressive and plastic, its harmonies are refined and sophisticated, and the orchestration is perhaps the most original of all the symphonies. Classical principles of form are smoothly and naturally incorporated into the language of the symphony, and the two Viennese masters – Brahms and Bruckner – have never been so close to each other.”