Young Ambassador Review: Oundjian Conducts Dvořák Seven

Stirling's Young Ambassador, Seona Glen, reviews Oundjian Conducts Dvořák Seven, Sat 12 Oct at Usher Hall, Edinburgh.
Solo Cellist Sol Gabetta. Photograph by Marco Borggreve
Firstly, I completely loved the whole concert!  It was quite unlike any I have been to before.  The Britten was a fantastic way to open.  The first few powerful bars had me gripped, and the huge sound was overwhelming.  The piece was well chosen, and I thought it was a great way to introduce any newcomers to orchestral music present to the RSNO, in preparation for the perhaps less accessible cello concerto.  Judging by the applause at the end, the rest of the audience enjoyed this piece as much as I did.  I particularly liked the way Oundjian asked each section to stand, as it allowed people in the stalls to see all the players and their instruments in the more hidden sections towards the back.
I thought the cellist, Sol Gabetta, was phenomenal.  Her enthusiasm and body language brought a lot to the whole performance for me, and in some of the sections where the cello stood on it’s own, she had the audience completely captivated.  I especially enjoyed the way you could see a strong connection between her and both the the first violins and the cellos. It was most certainly worth it to get such a close up view of the outside players and of Gabetta’s playing.  As a violin learner I found it fascinating to watch, and I would encourage any other strings learner to sit in the first few rows, so as to watch how the professionals perform.
I am very much looking forward to seeing another RSNO concert soon, and as I have seen many performances in the Glasgow Royal Concert Hall, I would be interested to hear how the orchestra sounds in the Usher Hall.
Seona Glen
Seona is part of the RSNO's Young Ambassador scheme, arranged by the Learning and Engagement Department. For more information, visit the RSNO website.
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