Elgar’s The Dream of Gerontius

11 Dec

I had no experience with orchestra before the show two weeks ago. Thanks to Naomi who gave us the free entrance to Royal Welsh College of Music & Drama performance, I had a very enjoyable experience. As a first-timer, I didn’t really know what to observe and what to appreciate, but I was still fascinated by the show.

What a splendid timing! That was my first impression of the chorus and symphony orchestra performance at St David’s Hall. The violins, the piano, the harps, the choir and others – there are so many of them – started and ended at the exact timings.  It’s as if there is someone whisper in their ear counting one two three for them. Then I realised, it was the magic of the conductor. With his gesture and expression, he lead the team to produce such a wonderful timing.

The second interesting thing is the mix of the choir singers. There are males and females, young and old. The results are not the normal angelic shrill voice. The combination produced interestingly beautiful singing.

Elgar’s The Dream of Gerontius composition is very beautiful. It consists of two parts. First is when a man is about to die, expressing his desperation and sorrow, and when the end come – the calm. The second part is about his curious soul on the journey to see God. Along the way, he was worry of why he has not seen God. The angel was there to console him and the devil to try him.

The combination of musics and voices supported each other to bring out the effects. Mark Padmore, Susan Bickley and Christopher Purves surely sounded impressive. I wished to hear more of Christopher Purves singing actually; unfortunately he did not have that much chance.

I must say, the parents of the performing students must had been really proud of them.

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