Norrbotten Chamber Orchestra visits Umeå, bringing with it three big-name string composers: classical geniuses Bach and Mozart and latter-day American composer Samuel Barber. The orchestra will also be accompanied by two wonderful soloists, Christian Svarfvar and Kim Hellgren.
The sixBrandenburg concertosby Johann Sebastian Bach (1685-1750) are accessible, multifaceted and much loved. InConcerto No. 1we get the feeling of being out hunting, thanks to its impressive horns. Bach actually included a genuine and well-known hunting signal to this piece. A delightfully slow movement gives way to a suite of dances that are charming and romantic.
Samuel Barber's (1910-1981) is characterised by a sorrowful beauty. The piece has been played at exclusive events such as presidential funerals and memorial ceremonies for victims of the terrorist attacks in New York in 2001, but also in less sombre contexts, such as in the TV seriesThe Simpsons. Barber himself thought that theAdagioovershadowed all his other works.
Wolfgang Amadeus Mozart (1756-1791) loved all instruments, but those closest to his heart were probably the strings. Mozart himself was not only a piano virtuoso, but also an excellent violinist.Sinfonia Concertanteis a brilliant combination of concerto grosso, solo concert and symphony, where the violin and viola are engaged in an "internal dialogue" as though they were "one and the same soul," according to the greatest violinist of our day, Anne-Sophie Mutter. Written soon after his mother's death, the piece demonstrates the master's typical marrying of emotions: deep melancholy later replaced by hopeful rejoicing, in spite of it all.
Creativity, an almost incredible diversity of motives and fancy characteriseSymphony No. 33, most especially its conclusion, with its "unification in the spirit of humour, marches and the pastoral life". Mozart, who was always in need of money, had already allowed the symphony to be printed and published when he offered the sole rights to a prince in Donaueschingen. A creative move, to say the least!