SSO: Sibelius & Britten

This was one of the better Seattle Symphony shows I've ever been to: Ludovic Morlot conducted Sibelius' tone poem "The Oceanides", Britten's "Four Sea Interludes" from Peter Grimes, and, for the second half, Sibelius' second symphony. It's all music I like a lot, and I've heard the SSO play both the Interludes and the second symphony before (with different conductors), but this time they played like wildcats. The program formed part of what they will soon take on tour, and I suspect they liked playing it, but this was a Thursday show and not exactly packed, so while I've come to expect a high level of professionalism from this orchestra I did not expect this level of frenzy. As usual during the applause the conductor pointed out this or that section: the horns, the bassonist, etc., but he really should have had the strings take a bow as well: tonight they cut their parts right out of the air.

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