Ten Tors Orchestra with Leland Chen at St Andrew's Church Plymouth (review)

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Ten Tors Orchestra with Leland Chen at St Andrew's Church Plymouth

There could surely have been no finer way to get the new Classical Masters Series off to a flying start than this outstanding concert by the Ten Tors Orchestra.

From the taut opening bars of Beethoven’s Coriolan Overture, conductor Simon Ible drew an intuitive performance from his players, finely capturing the essential dramatic contrast in the writing.

While a programme of three well-known works is especially enjoyable, there is always a risk that little new can sometimes be said.

Mendelssohn’s eminently well-written, abundantly tuneful and all-familiar Violin Concerto falls into this category, but the quite superb playing of Leland Chen simply breathed new life into the work.

The essential virtuosity was always to the fore in the outer movements, and the Andante achieved a beauty of tone rarely heard, but there was a quite inspirational approach to the melodic line and phrasing, which ultimately proved so effective, communicating so effortlessly with the orchestra, to create a near-perfect ensemble.

Haydn’s effervescent London Symphony rounded the evening off with great aplomb, always so well-disciplined, yet never short of the composer’s vital humour, and allowing each section of the well-balanced orchestra, led with great assurance by Malcolm Latchem, simply to perform at its highest level.


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