Beethoven & Mendelssohn (Australian Romantic and Classical Orchestra, Richard Gill, Rachael Beesley)
Dedicated to the memory of its founder, this debut album by the Australian Romantic & Classical Orchestra is a fitting tribute to Richard Gill, that tireless music advocate and lovable larrikin who died of cancer at the age of 76 in October 2018. Gill’s vision of an orchestra dedicated to the historically informed performance of late 18th to early 20th century repertoire continues to thrive under co-artistic directors Rachael Beesley and Nicole van Bruggen, with ARCO engaged in a wide range of performance and educational initiatives.
These live recordings span from 2013 to 2020. The first, a retelling of Mendelssohn’s String Symphony No. 10 in B minor (MVW10) sees Beesley and his colleagues bring respectful empathy to this early student work, investing the opening with the required sobriety before an explosion of lively music. rhythmic activity.
Made several months before his death, Gill’s account of Mendelssohn’s “Fingal’s Cave” Overture shows him as an accomplished sculptor of orchestral tone and texture, nurturing his forces to an unbridled climax, before settling appease to an elegant conclusion.
Recorded at the dawn of the COVID pandemic, Symphony No. 7 in A, Op. 92 is the indisputable highlight of this program. Crackling with dramatic energy throughout, Beesley imbues the music with a strong sense of architecture, as well as a joyful realization of the work’s overriding rhythmic impulse, resulting in a thrilling and charged run. adrenaline to the finish.
At a time when Australia lacks neither chamber orchestras nor connoisseurs of historical principles, ARCO still claims a special place in a lively and dynamic environment. These exuberant performances are a worthy tribute and continuation of Gill’s ardent musical pioneering.
Listen on Apple Music.
Title: Perspective & Celebration: Beethoven & Mendelssohn
Works: Music by Beethoven and Mendelssohn
Performers: Aaustralian Romantic and Classical Orchestra/Richard Gill, Rachael Beesley