For lovers of the string orchestra this is an unmissable event, comprising five celebrated works, three from the Baroque period and two from the late 19th century. The Corelli Concerto Grosso being played, a particular favourite from his Op 6 set of twelve, displays such varied emotion within its short 10-minute time frame. April is surely the perfect month to showcase the work which follows, Vivaldi’s perennially loved ‘Spring’ from The Four Seasons. The sixth and last of Bach’s ground-breaking Brandenburg Concertos (which has no violins) is remarkable for its sublime beauty and rhythmic drive and brings the first half to an end in a most compelling fashion. After the interval comes Elgar’s Serenade for Strings, which never loses its appeal and contains, in its central slow movement, what is surely one of the composer’s most heartfelt melodies. The final work, Grieg’s atmospheric Holberg Suite, is arresting right from its very opening: its structure is derived from the Baroque dance suite but its mood is utterly Nordic. This wonderful programme is sure to delight.
Corelli Concerto Grosso in D major Op 6 No 4
Vivaldi ‘Spring’ from The Four Seasons (soloist Michael Bochmann)
Bach Brandenburg Concerto No 6 in B flat major
Elgar Serenade for Strings in E minor
Grieg Holberg Suite Op 40
£18 and £14 (students half-price and free entry for children aged 10 & under)
Available from Malvern Tourist Information Centre, The Lyttelton Well Courtyard, 6 Church Street, Malvern in person or by phone (01684 892289) and from The Courtyard, Hereford by phone (01432 340555) and online.