Review: BSO Classical Extravaganza, Portsmouth Guildhall

ParkFest preparation is now under way

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A literally spectacular as well as sonically stunning show delighted a large audience as laser lights, fireworks and vivid music illumined the Guildhall.

The Bournemouth Symphony Orchestra shone throughout a populist programme introduced by Jamie Crick for Classic FM. Obvious attractions included The Dambusters March and music from Jurassic Park, rumbustious Gershwin and Bernstein overtures, and the Adagio from Khachaturian’s Spartacus but Elgar’s rousing Pomp And Circumstance March No 4 was played instead of the better-known No 1 – and that fitted well in a concert where conductor Maxime Tortelier secured playing of brilliance but also depth. It was particularly pleasing, for example, to hear the Intermezzo from Mascagni’s opera, Cavalleria Rusticana, played with tender simplicity rather than souped up for more obvious effect.

And deputy leader David Derudder’s beguiling solo violin in a movement from Rimsky-Korsakov’s Scheherazade highlighted the level of individual virtuosity within the orchestra’s ranks. The BSO will be back on Thursday for the Sunset Concert for Heroes on Southsea Common, commemorating the 70th anniversary of D-Day.