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Italian pianist Alessio Bax was First Prize-winner at both the Leeds and Hamamatsu international piano competitions.
In this concert he plays Mozart’s Piano Concerto No.27 in C minor, the most symphonic of concertos, for his MSO debut.
Composed around the same time as Mozart’s Don Giovanni, it shares much of the opera’s unrelenting tension and tragedy. So defiant and intense is the music, it’s as though Mozart has burst through the boundaries of his conventional times.
Sibelius’ First Symphony was written around the same time as his patriotic Finlandia: a time his native Finland was struggling for independence. Rich and romantic, the First Symphony is subtly flavoured with the Finnish folk-inspired melodies that would become quintessential Sibelius.
Full of the same drama and intensity as his Fifth Symphony, Beethoven’s Egmont Overture makes for an arresting opening to this dynamic program.