REVIEW: Heroes and Superheroes – Bournemouth Symphony Orchestra at Portsmouth Guildhall

Bournemouth Symphony Orchestra's tribute to Heroes and Superheroes

Bournemouth Symphony Orchestra's tribute to Heroes and Superheroes

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Holding out for a hero? There were plenty on offer as the BSO swooped back to the Guildhall on an all-action mission to entertain.

These world-class musicians, under conductor Pete Harrison, gave an Oscar night warm-up like no other, revealing the majesty and widescreen sweep of the scores that have become the wind beneath the wings of the Hollywood swashbucklers.

It was as if the movies had been remastered for the ears. Peeling back the screen, we saw instead the drama, the teamwork, the energy and sheer magificence of the scores that add such lustre to the big screen glow.

As welling strings elucidated Maurice Jarre’s overture from Lawrence of Arabia, the mind’s eye conjured beating sun on orange desert dunes.

As shimmering violins and urgent brass played out the drama of Ron Goodwin’s immortal 633 Squadron, I could see RAF heroes in blue skies, soaring and diving as the flutes fluttered.

But it was not all action - there was tenderness too, particularly in the heart-rending theme from Schindler’s List, evoking images of melancholy and horror.

And it was not all movies either. The orchestral scores of video games including The Legend of Zelda, Shrek and Call of Duty, were, I suspect, a revelation to many for their cinematic splendour.

Rounded off with themes from Robin Hood, Raiders of the Lost Ark, and, of course, Superman, with a rousing encore of Thunderbirds, here was conclusive proof that movies and music go hand-in-hand. Populist, certainly, and arguably more accessible than the classics, but in the hands of the BSO, classics nonetheless.

ALAN COOPER

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