You have to collect up the stones thrown at you and start to build a pedestal with them.’ The words of Hector Berlioz, and history was to prove him right. In his own lifetime, his original handling of orchestral sound and orchestration was met with much incomprehension and criticism. But it did open the door to a specific emphasis on timbre that marked the subsequent evolution of French music. The quest for colour that was still inspiring such composers as Fauré, Debussy and Ravel almost a century later and which became a hallmark of French music was already to be found in the cantata La Mort de Cléopâtre, which was Berlioz’ ‘exam piece’ for the Prix de Rome and was rejected as being too daring. On this search for intimist atmospheres and soft colours, the Koninklijk Concertgebouworkest and the talented Robin Ticciati seem an exciting combination.