Review: Amadeus Chamber Orchestra Concert at St Albans
6:00 PM May 25, 2022
John Manning reviews the last concert of the Amadeus Chamber Orchestra in St Albans.
For many years one of the pleasures of gigging in St Albans has been performances by the Amadeus Chamber Orchestra.
They have rarely failed to delight and their concert at St Savior’s Church in St Albans on Saturday was no exception, especially as it saw the return of its conductor emeritus Simon Thompson and featured its remarkable principal flautist , Janna Hüneke.
In addition, the program included three rarely performed works by well-known composers – Dvorak’s Czech Suite, by Mozart Andante in C major K315, and Lennox Berkeley’s arrangement of Poulenc Flute Sonata.
The concert opened with Dvorak’s Czech Suite, a delightful work in five parts strongly influenced by the folk music of his native country.
The two works for solo flute and orchestra followed. The Mozart Andante it might have sounded a bit familiar to those hearing it for the first time due to some similarities to the music of his late opera The magic flute.
Composed 200 years later, Poulenc flute sonata is a lively and altogether delightful work.
In both pieces, Janna Hüneke showed her tremendous virtuosity with an exceptional interpretation that delighted the large audience and, as expected, the orchestra provided an excellent accompaniment.
The evening ended with a performance of Beethoven’s Second Symphony.
Although not the most popular of his nine symphonies, it has great significance, coming at a time when his deafness was becoming more apparent and his premiere in the Romantic style.
Amadeus and Simon Thompson once again excelled in their performance, presenting tight game sharpness in a great performance.
Once again they have proven themselves to be among the elite of pro-am orchestras.