The concert starts with J S Bach’s Passacaglia. Originally an organ piece it has been arranged by the Sheffield Chamber Orchestra's tireless conductor, Robin McEwan for the wind section.
Probably composed early in Bach’s career, Robert Schumann described the variations of the Passacaglia as “intertwined so ingeniously that one can never cease to be amazed.”
The string section will then play the Christmas Concerto by Arcangelo Corelli scored for a ‘concertino’ (i.e. solo violins and cello) with Ripieno strings, beloved of this era. Enjoy the dynamic contrast this creates in the 6 alternating fast and slow movements. It was composed to be played on ‘the night of Christmas’ — a lovely way for us all to look forward to the festive season ahead.
Brahms’ Hungarian dances are amongst his most popular works and were his most profitable. The first half of the concert concludes with possibly the best known of them all — No. 5 in G minor. This is actually based on a piece composed by Hungarian composer Béla Kéler and not a traditional folk song as Brahms thought, but lovely none the less.
After the interval the concert concludes with Brahms’ 4th and final symphony which links to the first piece as the 4th and final movement here is also a Passacaglia — very rare in symphonies. The only one of Brahms pieces to end in a minor key it has been described as being “like a dark well; the longer we look into it, the more brightly the stars shine back”
The programme for the evening is: – J S Bach (arr McEwan) — Passacaglia Arcangelo Corelli — Christmas Concerto Brahms — Hungarian Dance No. 5 INTERVAL Brahms — Symphony No. 4
£12 and £6 (student and unwaged)