Havant Symphony Orchestra are looking forward to returning to
their home Borough with an exciting concert of Russian Romantic classics at
Oaklands Catholic School.
Alexander Borodin spent over 10 years writing his opera
Prince Igor and still it wasn’t finished in his lifetime.
The Polovtsian Dances which appear in the opera have found a separate life as
either ballet or straight concert music. In 1953, Wright and Forrest
adapted several of the tunes from the Dances for use in their musical
Kismet, the most famous melody being that used for the song Stranger
Also using a theme from an earlier composer, Sergei Rachmaninov chose a theme
by Paganini on which to base his Rhapsody for Piano and Orchestra. Here
also there is one particularly famous melody – the 18th
Variation – but there are fireworks, technical bravura from the soloist
and a sumptuous string sound throughout the piece! Pianist Viv McLean has
performed twice with the Havant Chamber Orchestra but this will be his first
appearance with the Symphony Orchestra and we are sure he will be a big
From the Polovtsy – the Russian name for the Cuman
people of Hungary and Romania – we travel to Persia for the second half
of our concert. The Persian Queen Scheherazade was the legendary
storyteller of the One Thousand and one Nights. By ending each
night’s story on a cliffhanger, Scheherazade ensured that the Persian
King wanted to keep her alive to hear the end of the story the next night, and
managed to escape the fate of 1000 women before her and become Queen!
Composer Rimsky-Korsakov paints glorious pictures of the sea and Sinbad’s
ship, princes and princesses, a festival at Baghdad, and a shipwreck.
Listen out for the lovely violin solo representing Scheherazade