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Saturday 18th October 2014  7.30
Conductor:  Robin Browning

6.30pm: Pre-concert talk in the auditorium by Philip Handy about Schumann’s Cello Concerto.
7.00pm: Pre-concert interlude in the Octagon Lounge by a string quartet from Churcher’s College. 

Dance Variations – William Mathias

Cello concerto in A minor – Schumann
Soloist: Philip Handy

Symphony No 2 in D – Beethoven

Havant Chamber Orchestra’s first concert of this season is a delightful mix of the romantic, the classical and the modern!

William Mathias was a Welsh composer who died in 1992.  His violin concerto was played at the BBC Proms this summer and HCO will perform his Dance Variations, written in the mid-1970s.  Our sister orchestra, the Havant Symphony Orchestra, have performed a couple of works by Mathias in the past – his early Dance Overture and his Sinfonietta – and enjoyed them very much.  Dance Variations will be a completely new work for HCO, though.  Always an exciting prospect!

HCO are joined by cellist Philip Handy to play the cello concerto by Schumann.  Philip is based in the New Forest and is building a great reputation locally.  The concerto is a concise and charming example of the romantic repertoire, having a rather unusual structure for a concerto of this period, but magnificently showing off the cello’s wonderful sonority.

The concert concludes with Beethoven’s second Symphony – written at a time when he was becoming increasingly deaf and having severe stomach problems (one critic has claimed that the last movement begins with a belch and a groan of pain!).  At its premier in Vienna in 1803 it was not particularly well received but it has since become an enduring favourite.  The BBC Proms series this summer included all the Beethoven symphonies except this one, so now is your chance to hear it!

Philip Handy

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