When you go to a concert, particularly featuring something as well-known as "The Four Seasons", your expectation is probably rather like meeting an old friend – no great surprises, but nonetheless a pleasure.
Richard Tognetti and the ACO introduced us to our old friend in the company of new friends, and each enlivened the other.
Tognetti is convinced that there is a profound symbiosis between the music of the Baroque and Islamic traditions, forged particularly in Venice, where the world's cultures met and interacted.
In this concert the ACO plays alongside Joseph and James Tawadras – Joseph on the oud, and James on the Riq and the Bendir – the former a tambourine like instrument, and the latter resembling the Celtic bouron.
Out of the stunning intricacies of rhythm and melody come excitement, passion, and joy. Only superb musicians could tackle such complexity, and the ACO with Joseph and James Tawadras clearly relish the challenge, and their sheer enjoyment is palpable.
For many of us in the Concert Hall this marriage of genres and cultures is something new and unfamiliar, yet engaging and delightful.
Tognetti features as the virtuoso violinist, bringing almost a gypsy fiddler's approach at times – even to the Four Seasons – and even his swaying body language expressing his total immersion in the music. At some high notes he leapt into the air - both feet off the ground.
Rarely have I heard a more appreciative audience, and with good reason.
This may well have been one of the most innovative and satisfying orchestral performances it has been my pleasure to attend.
A great way for the ACO to celebrate its 40th birthday.
Sat 14 Feb 8pm Canberra Canberra Llewellyn Hall
Sun 15 Feb 2pm Sydney Sydney Opera House
Tue 17 Feb 7pm Sydney Sydney Opera House
Best availability in Sydney
Wed 18 Feb 7.30pm Wollongong Town Hall
Thu 19 Feb 7.30pm Newcastle Newcastle City Hall
Sat 21 Feb 7pm Sydney City Recital Hall Angel Place
Sun 22 Feb 2.30pm Melbourne Hamer Hall
Mon 23 Feb 8pm Melbourne Hamer Hall
GABRIELI Sonata XXI 'con tre violini'
TAWADROS (orch. Tognetti) Kindred
VIVALDI Spring (from The FOUR SEASONS), Op.8, No.1
TAWADROS (orch. Tognetti) Sleight of Hand
VIVALDI Summer (from The FOUR SEASONS), Op.8, No.2
TAWADROS (orch. Tognetti) Eye of the Beholder
VIVALDI Concerto per la solennità di s. Lorenzo, RV562: II. Grave
VIVALDI Concerto for Violin in A minor, RV356, Op.3, No.6: III. Presto
TAWADROS (orch. Tognetti) Permission to Evaporate
TAWADROS (orch. Tognetti) Give or Take
VIVALDI Autumn (from The Four Seasons), Op.8, No.3
MARCELLO Sinfonia (from Il pianto e il riso DELLE quattro stagioni): II. Andante
TAWADROS (orch. Tognetti) Point of Departure
VIVALDI Winter (from The FOUR SEASONS), Op.8, No.4
TAWADROS (orch. Tognetti) Constantinople
Richard Tognetti Director & Violin
Joseph Tawadros Oud
James Tawadros Percussion