Santtu-Matias Rouvali conductor
Nikolai Lugansky piano
SIBELIUS Lemminkäinen’s Return
RACHMANINOV Piano Concerto No. 1
TCHAIKOVSKY Swan Lake, excerpts
No need to choose between Finnish legend, a night at the ballet, or an opportunity to hear one of today’s top pianists – Santtu-Matias Rouvali rolls all three into one thrilling concert.
‘Balletic’ is a word that comes to mind when watching Santtu-Matias Rouvali conduct, and tonight he turns to the quintessential ballet composer, Tchaikovsky. Swan Lake richly deserves its place as one of the most popular pieces in the orchestral repertoire. Conjuring up the grace of the swan-maidens, the terrifying power of the villain who has them under his spell, and the pathos of Siegfried and Odette’s doomed love, this is music that lingers long in the memory.
Nikolai Lugansky, a pianist who ‘has the Russian sound at his fingertips’ (Financial Times) is the soloist in Rachmaninov’s Piano Concerto No. 1. Rachmaninov wrote the first version of this piece when he was just 18 years old. Outer movements already full of his trademark sweeping melodies and fiery showmanship frame a ravishing central Nocturne.
Sibelius’s Lemminkäinen’s Return opens the programme in evocative fashion, telling of the epic journey home of the legendary Finnish character.
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