Friday, 22 May 2009

Our choir got reviewed

In the SMH and The Australian.

From the Australian:

William Walton's oratorio Belshazzar's Feast (1931) was the final work. It was electrifying. Thrillingly fast tempos, biting syncopated rhythms and knife-edge precision generated sizzling energy and bold drama that celebrated the work's pagan savagery and manic wildness. By contrast, the performers brought sinuous shape and expressive intensity to the passages of pungent lyricism.

Both nice reviews, though both completely miss the theological point in a fairly major way!

The concerts themselves (2 nights) were an absolute blast, and Vladimir Ashkenazy is without a doubt da man. Not to mention that the current choir master, Brett Weymark, has really lifted the Sydney Philharmonia to a very high level.

"Happy is he who taketh your children and dashes their heads against a stone"

-Ps 137, and a part of the text we sang.

1 comment:

Tom Forrester-Paton said...

Hi Gordon, Tom Forrester-Paton here, from the basses. What a riot!I was interested in your comment that the theological point was missed by the review, as I have also noted the absence in any of the reviews/comment on this work of any reference to the rather obvious fact that a few years later, to have written a work treating the deliverance of the Jews from Babylonian bondage as a bit of a laugh would have been unthinkable. But Walton wrote the Feast at a time when Jewishness was a bit of an "in" joke in the sophisticated circles in which he moved. So while he cannot have intended it, the work had a dash of poignancy for me. Isn't Mr A wonderful?