Monday, 31 March 2008


As the strains of Scheherazade wafted from the stage and swirled around the audience, I sat back and my mind travelled into the magical world of 1001 Arabian nights. The Dome concert hall was full on Saturday night for the London Philharmonic Orchestra’s very popular choice of music – Rossini’s The Thieving Magpie and the mystical Scheherazade. Rimsky-Korsakov’s delightful suite follows the fairy-tale and exotic wonders of the stories told by the Sultana to her bloodthirsty Sultan husband to delay her execution. For 1,001 nights she narrates her stories, each night ending with a cliff hanger and her life is saved. Eventually, he abandons his bloodthirsty vow to kill her. The beauty of this piece is that you can follow the stories by just listening to the mood of the music. The Sea and Sinbad’s Ship, the Shipwreck on the Rock - dramatic, powerful and exciting. The Young Prince and Princess – sweet and romantic.

And what of the orchestra? Always a professional performance from the LPO. I was a little disappointed at the absence of Vladimir Jurowski (the young, handsome, intense, Russian Principal Conductor of the LPO and Music Director at Glyndebourne) – always a show stopper. However, Dmitry Sitkovetsky took control of his orchestra with gusto and enthusiasm and produced an excellent evening.

LPO – keep coming back to Brighton – and bring Vlad with you next time - please…


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