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King's Lynn Corn Exchange Review: Adventures Across America with Bernstein, Barber, George Gershwin

Review: Adventures Across America, Alive Lynn Corn Exchange

If there is such a thing as a ‘hoe-down’ atmosphere it certainly was present at the recent Norfolk Symphony Orchestra concert, featuring popular classical music from America and Mexico, a programme entitled Adventures Across America.

The orchestra played to a packed and enthusiastic audience, everyone seemingly in high spirits, their happy and lively mood, no doubt engendered by the vitality and American dance rhythms contained within the music played.

The Corn Exchange on Tuesday Market Place, Lynn
The Corn Exchange on Tuesday Market Place, Lynn

The programme consisted of Bernstein’s lively and catchy Candide Overture, then the moving and tender Adagio for Strings by Samuel Barber (originally the second movement of a string quartet), George Gershwin’s very well known Rhapsody in Blue, with distinguished soloist Viv McLean giving an unaffected, romantic performance but with all the necessary pizzazz when required!

The two last works played were the popular Four Dance Episodes from Aaron Copland’s Ballet Rodeo, the movements mostly lively but with quieter moments in the Corral Nocturne and Saturday Night Waltz, and then we visited Mexico in an appropriate finale, a Danzon No.2 by Arturo Marquez, a piece based on the music of the Veracruz region of Mexico, but with origins in the dance styles from Cuba.

The music so inspired the musicians, all and sundry donned Mexican costume in keeping with the joyous nature of the Mexican dance rhythms!

Thanks to all sections of the orchestra, conductor Steve Bingham, soloist Viv McLean and leader Brigitte Mallon, for lifting our spirits in these trying times with a selection of cool classics. We look forward to A European Romance on January 22 next year!

Andy Tyler

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