Auckland Youth Orchestra Concert
In their first visit to Whangarei since 2016 AYO, under the baton of their music director Antun Pojanich, present a varied programme of works by Richard Strauss (Horn Concerto No. 1), Jules Mouquet (La Flute de Pan), and Prokofiev (his swan-song, the Symphony No. 7). Written when the composer was just 18, Strauss's virtuosic concerto is an attractive and engaging work that fully deserves its enduring popularity – not for nothing is it often dubbed “the best horn concerto of the nineteenth century”. In all but name a concerto for flute and orchestra, the Mouquet is a colourful and captivating pastoral piece.
The soloists, Henry Close (horn) and Jacob Webster (flute) were prize-winners at the 2018 AYO Soloist Competition, playing these same concertos.
Although Prokofiev wrote his Symphony No. 7 when he was knocking at Death’s door, his vaulting creative spirit was utterly undimmed. Yes, of course there is melancholy, but this is fully complemented by music of exuberant wit, sardonic humour – and heart-tuggingly gorgeous melody. There remain distinct traces of the “music for children” that Prokofiev originally set out to compose, but the resulting, broadly retrospective, even valedictory symphony far transcends its modest beginnings. One of his finest symphonies (and that's saying something), this is definitely not one to be missed!
Tickets available from Ticketek (Forum North) or online via www.eventfinda.co.nz [usual fees apply]