On Wednesday 19th September, 13 King's pupils arrived at the Barbican Hall, London to marvel in the spectacle of Sir Simon Rattle conducting the London Symphony Orchestra in a scintillating programme of 20th century music. The audience and orchestra gave a rapturous welcome to Sir Simon, whose incredible stint conducting the Berlin Philharmonic Orchestra came to a close this year as he took up his role at LSO. The extended brass section required for Janáček's Sinfonietta were stood at the back of the stage behind the percussion section to deliver the dramatic fanfares which punctuate the angular sound-world of that work. Following that dazzling opening was another work which presented even more beautiful, ethereal sounds: Szymanowski's First Violin Concerto, performed by Janine Jansen. The violinists among us: Damian, Carolina, Temi, Sam and Mrs. Hines, seemed awestruck by the finesse of Janine's playing, especially the sweet sound made by the (borrowed) Stradivarius violin on which Janine played, and the magical harmonics in the cadenza. After the interval, the mighty Fifth Symphony by Sibelius closed the concert and Simon Rattle made a short, heart-felt speech to say goodbye to Lennox Mackenzie, the sub-leader of the orchestra, who joined the LSO in 1980.
Mr John Mountford, Director of Music