The concert begins with the brilliant overture to Orpheus in the Underworld, composed by Jacques Offenbach and arranged for the German premiere by Carl Binder.
It is a potpourri of some of the best tunes from the operetta, ending with the enduringly popular can-can which so titillated the Parisian audiences in 1858.
Next up is the radiant piano concerto by Grieg which he composed in 1868 but revised many times, and indeed the final version which we are performing dates from just before he died in 1907.
The final work in the programme is perhaps the most famous piece of all time, Beethoven’s 5th Symphony. Begun in 1807 and completed the following year, at a time when he was already profoundly deaf, this is one of the finest works of Beethoven’s middle period. The opening motif has been described fittingly as ‘fate knocking at the door’, and the short-short-short-long rhythm reappears in various guises throughout the symphony. The progress from the angry C minor of the opening movement through to the C major blaze of glory in the finale makes for a most exciting conclusion to our concert.