Review: Bournemouth Symphony Orchestra, Portsmouth Guildhall

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Intensity of both concentration and feeling hallmarked the BSO’s concert with conductor Alexander Vedernikov and soloist Nikita Boriso-Glebsky. Both are Russian, and it showed.

Rachmaninov’s Isle Of The Dead had an earthy, trenchant quality – not rushed but never wallowing either, always forward-moving and vibrant in its dark colourings.

And Ravel’s orchestration of Pictures At An Exhibition for once sounded less French than Russian, like Mussorgsky’s original piano score. Such was the character the back-to-form BSO produced in sections such as Gnomus, where Vedernikov practically acted out the character.

Boriso-Glebsky, winner of the Sibelius Competition, was daring in playing the slow movement of the Finnish composer’s Violin Concerto truly ‘adagio di molto’ as marked. But he sustained his tempo so well that the musical line was never in danger of being lost and his command of the lowest level of dynamics was achieved without compromising tone-quality.