REVIEW of Northern Sinfonietta at Alnwick Playhouse, by Martin Gillham.
Music brings pleasure to people in so many ways, but it can be a selfish pursuit.
Last Saturday’s concert in Alnwick Playhouse by the Northumbria Sinfonietta was quite the opposite.
Nearly 40 amateur musicians gathered to play Rossini, Beethoven and Brahms for no fees in order to raise much-needed funds for the support of the Playhouse – and, of course, to enjoy the experience and the music.
So Bravo to them all, and to Bryan Jackson who initiates and leads this musical enterprise.
Teenagers and ‘old stagers’ made up the orchestra, which played with spirit through the evening.
Soloists Iona Brown (violin) from the Royal Northern Sinfonia, and Nick Byrne (cello) graced the occasion in the Brahms Double Concerto, bringing the nobility and warmth of this glorious work to us all.
The Beethoven ‘Eroica’ Symphony was a real treat for those who cannot get to The Sage, or other venues where professional orchestras perform, and if the tempi in the performance revealed no fleet-footed hero (it was written with Napoleon in mind), there was a granite-like solidity and determination in the playing, which reminded me of Otto Klemperer’s great interpretations of Beethoven in the 50s and 60s.
The well-filled auditorium will, I am sure, want to say with me “well done, and thank you for the gift of music”.
The Northern Sinfonietta performs an annual concert at the Playhouse each year to help raise funds for the venue.
Artists from the Northern Sinfonia join the ensemble for free to keep costs down and all proceeds go towards the £50,000 a year running costs of the venue.