Spring fever pervades delightful Bangor Symphony Orchestra concert

Posted March 04, 2013, at 1:18 p.m.
Last modified March 04, 2013, at 3:20 p.m.
Bangor Symphony Orchestra conductor Lucas Richman addresses the audience on Sunday at the Collins Center in Orono.
Bangor Symphony Orchestra conductor Lucas Richman addresses the audience on Sunday at the Collins Center in Orono. Buy Photo
Brian Hinrichs, the new executive director of the Bangor Symphony Orchestra, was introduced to the audience for the first time before Sunday's performance at the Collins Center in Orono.
Brian Hinrichs, the new executive director of the Bangor Symphony Orchestra, was introduced to the audience for the first time before Sunday's performance at the Collins Center in Orono. Buy Photo
The Bangor Symphony Orchestra, under conductor Lucas Richman, finishes “&quotFantasia on a Theme by Thomas Tallis" by Ralph Vaughan Williams” on Sunday at the Collins Center in Orono.
Kevin Bennett
The Bangor Symphony Orchestra, under conductor Lucas Richman, finishes “"Fantasia on a Theme by Thomas Tallis" by Ralph Vaughan Williams” on Sunday at the Collins Center in Orono. Buy Photo

A little madness in the spring is wholesome even for the king. And even if spring might not technically arrive for another few weeks, it certainly felt springlike both inside and outside at the Collins Center for the Arts in Orono, during the Bangor Symphony Orchestra’s concert on Sunday.

There were many delights on the program, the fourth overall for the BSO’s 117th season, but certainly the centerpiece was the BSO’s lithe, stimulating performance of Vivaldi’s “The Four Seasons.” Soloist Lara St. John gave the impassioned, fiery performance the piece calls for; in her flame-colored dress, she was the perfect visual match to the auditory pyrotechnics. Alternating between big, bold, physical swipes of the bow and keening sensuality, St. John — an accomplished violinist with a musically diverse background — was undoubtedly one of the finest soloists to grace the BSO stage in recent years. Her well-deserved standing ovation resulted in a performance of a Bach partita for violin.

The BSO was in fine form for the entire concert. Maestro Lucas Richman clearly designed the programming as a showcase for the strings, out of which he coaxed evocative beauty from start to finish. Special attention must be paid to concertmaster Trond Saeverud and second violin principal Simon Bilyk, viola principal Laura Gallucci and cello principal Noreen Silver, all of whom led their respective sections with finesse, while each individually were allowed to shine.

Though the Vivaldi was a joy to hear, the opening performance of Vaughan Williams’ “Fantasia on a Theme by Thomas Tallis” very nearly stole the show. The aching melody woven in and out of the work brought dead silence to the auditorium, as Richman clearly relished conducting this piece in particular, something he himself admitted in his comments onstage, later. Among the things the maestro has brought to the BSO — and there are many — are texture and warmth.

The other work on the program was Ottorino Respighi’s Ancient Airs & Dances Suite No. 1, a light, lively work based on Renaissance-era Italian songs written for lute. Combined with the Vivaldi and the Williams, it made for an enchanting afternoon — the best concert of the season, so far.

SEE COMMENTS →

ADVERTISEMENT | Grow your business
ADVERTISEMENT | Grow your business

Similar Articles

More in Living