Charismatic Moscow Philharmonic Orchestra Launches The Usher Hall's 2019-20 Sunday Classics Season

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Charismatic Moscow Philharmonic Orchestra Launches The Usher Hall's 2019-20 Sunday Classics Season

Power and romance from acclaimed young Romanian pianist Alexandra Dariescu in Rachmaninov's Second Piano Concerto.

Searing passions, heartbreaking romance, all-consuming energy: the mighty Moscow Philharmonic Orchestra kicks off the Usher Hall's 2019-20 Sunday Classics concerts with a bang in an all-Russian programme of exceptional power and tenderness.

Known the world over as the soundtrack to classic weepie Brief Encounter, Rachmaninov's luscious Second Piano Concerto is the epitome of musical romance. Acclaimed young Romanian pianist Alexandra Dariescu, renowned for the potency and poetry of her incisive performances, is the soloist in this tear-jerking classic. Dariescu made waves in the performing arts world at the end of December 2017 with her own composition The Nutcracker and I, a ground-breaking multimedia performance for piano solo with dance and digital animation that is now touring the world to audience and critical acclaim.

Beforehand, the music of another legendary Russian romantic composer takes centre stage. Perhaps even matching Rachmaninov when it comes to the wearing of one's heart on one's musical sleeves, Tchaikovsky's turbulent tone poem Romeo and Juliet will have Edinburgh audiences surrendering themselves to the greatest love story ever written. Arguably the composer's first true masterpiece, it was widely dismissed on its premiere but has become a widely loved piece of the canon since.

Last heard at the Usher Hall to enormous applause in 2017, the Moscow Philharmonic brings old-school Russian richness and brilliance to all it plays - and a noble swagger under charismatic Yuri Simonov, Principal Conductor since 1998.

Simonov and his Orchestra bring their concert to a galvanising close with the stormy energy of Shostakovich's Tenth Symphony, supposedly composed to satisfy Soviet strictures, but in reality a savage portrait of Stalin and his terror. From frenzied violence to aching sensitivity, it's an unforgettable experience that culminates in a blaze of ecstatic joy.

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