Nicola Benedetti opens Worthing Symphony Orchestra’s new season

Nicola Benedetti and John Gibbons at WSO rehearsal by Stephen Goodger
Nicola Benedetti and John Gibbons at WSO rehearsal by Stephen Goodger

Nicola Benedetti returns to herald the start of Worthing Symphony Orchestra’s 2018-19 season on Sunday, September 2 at 2.45pm at the Assembly Hall, Worthing.

Spokeswoman Jennie Osborne said: “It takes a lot of hard work to keep a professional symphony orchestra going in these economically-uncertain times and the fact that WSO continues to survive is largely due to the drive and passion of John Gibbons, who this season celebrates his 21st year as music director.”

John recalls stand-out performances including Sir John Tomlinson singing Wotan, Julian Lloyd-Webber playing Delius, oboist Nick Daniel playing Francaix, Richard Hills premiering the Sussex Wurlitzer Concerto by Paul Lewis, and Peter Donohue playing Ravel.

“But for many, the outstanding musical relationship for WSO has been with Nicola Benedetti, and the superstar violinist returns for the opening concert of this, the orchestra’s 93rd season to play Prokofiev’s wonderful 2nd Violin Concerto, a work that falls into the easily accessible side of Prokofiev’s output alongside such popular works as Peter and the Wolf, his ballet score Romeo & Juliet and the Classical Symphony. It is full of beautiful melodies, especially in the lyrical slow movement, and concludes with a dazzling Rondo which shows off the soloist’s brilliant technique.

“The programme also includes Borodin’s mesmeric orchestral depiction In the Steppes of Central Asia, Elgar’s gloriously-ebullient overture Froissart and the profoundly-uplifting Fourth Symphony by British composer William Alwyn. This work, premiered by the Halle Orchestra under Sir John Barbirolli in 1959, is packed full of energy, beautiful melody and romantic harmony that will bring this season opener to a dramatic close.”

“Benedetti’s fame and brilliance is in no doubt of course, but what is less known is her passion for classical music education. Nicola has formed associations with schools, music colleges and local authorities. This is a passion she shares with John Gibbons, who in collaboration with West Sussex Music has staged free weekday WSO educational concerts for local schoolchildren for the past two seasons, with a third planned for 2019. This commitment to music education also means that students and under-16s can attend a full symphony concert for just £1.”

Tickets: 01903 206206 or www.worthingtheatres.co.uk.

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