Sigrún plays Beethoven’s unforgettable Violin Concerto.
Ludwig van Beethoven: Violin Concerto
Alice Mary Smith: Symphony no. 1
Richard Strauss: Tod und Verklärung
Beethoven’s Violin Concerto was a ground-breaking work that set the bar high for subsequent 19th-century composers in the genre. By turns lyrical, teasing, and potent, it showcases what both instrument and instrumentalist have to offer. Thus it is appropriate that it should be performed in this Beethoven anniversary season by Iceland Symphony’s concertmaster Sigrún Eðvaldsdóttir, who is well known for her inspired and expressive playing.
The second half of the programme is dedicated to two orchestral pieces from the second half of the 19th century. Alice Mary Smith, one of Britain’s most significant female composers in her day, wrote a number of choral and chamber works and two remarkable symphonies. Her first symphony, written in 1863, is particularly powerful and effective. The music is reminiscent of Mendelssohn, who was greatly admired in the British Isles.
The concert concludes with Richard Strauss’ magnificent tone poem Death and Transfiguration, a portrayal of an artist’s thoughts as he lays dying. Strauss’ vivid tonal web on display here, both in majestic climaxes and in the finely woven textures of the orchestra.
Swedish conductor Stefan Solyom takes the podium for the first time in Eldborg hall, several years after an outstanding performance with the orchestra in Háskólabíó, its former home. Solyom previously served as Music Director of Deutsche Nationaltheater and Staatskapelle Weimar and is now Chief Conductor of the Helsingborg Symphony Orchestra.
Further information on the concert can be found on the Iceland Symphony Orchestra website.