Following on from the outstanding side-by-side concert the night before, where members of the Southbank Sinfonia performed alongside College pupils in a variety of different ensembles and orchestras, the full complement of the Southbank Sinfonia arrived to deliver their own show to round out the 2022/23 Marlborough College Concert Series season.
It was quite simply, a triumph.
To a sell-out, capacity audience we were treated to a programme of all Dvorak.
After a rousing opening in the Slavonic Dance No 8 in G minor, which had all the necessary bounce and vigour, we then heard the Violin Concerto. The soloist was the excellent British violinist, Martyn Jackson. Jackson is a master craftsman with an enviable technique which allowed him to navigate the fiendish writing of this lengthy and demanding concerto with consummate skill. Portamento, violinist pyrotechnics and sublime phrasing were just a few of the many highlights throughout this engaging performance, with the Southbank offering precise accompaniment in response.
The second half featured the glorious ‘New World’ Symphony where both the orchestra and their long-standing and popular conductor, Simon Over, could really flex their musical muscles. Ensemble was spot-on throughout and there were some memorable solo contributions from the woodwind and horns, alongside crisp articulation and persuasive dynamic contrast.
The Southbank Sinfonia have now been our resident orchestra at the College for 15 years, and based on the last few days that partnership is a strong as ever.
That’s got to be good news for everyone.