From The Guardian, Fiona Maddocks: “The final work, Elgar’s “Enigma” Variations, was one of the best, most alert and detailed performances you could hope for. Wilson, whose gestures on the podium are so unassuming he appears to do nothing more than beat time, had scrutinised the score, and asked probing questions about every familiar phrase, making it fresh. The Sinfonia of London, mostly a recording ensemble, is made up of leading principals or chamber musicians who want to play for Wilson. You can hear their devotion.”
MY BELOVED CONDUCTOR SPEAKS!
[Proms Director} David Pickard and I had a conversation about Sinfonia Of London’s connection in the past to English music, principally John Barbirolli’s famous record of English music for strings and it is as we know Ralph Vaughan Williams’s 150th anniversary so I thought opening with the Tallis Fantasia would be (a) good thing. And built that around I guess the English romantics and a fairly recent work by a living composer, Huw Watkins, who is Welsh and one of my favorite composers and a piece which he actually happened to write for Adam Walker, who’s our principal flute. The rest of the program con-sists of things you might know and you might not know. Walton’s Partita, which is a tour de force but it’s rarely done, and I think that’s because it’s so impossibly difficult. … Very difficult! One of the first violins came up to me and he said, “This is absolutely bloody murder!” We really sweated over it, and I—I hope to pull it off.Above: Partita for Orchestra by William Walton (1957) written originally for the Cleveland Orchestra.
Sat 16 July 2022 18:30
Royal Albert Hall
London, United Kingdom
Sinfonia of London
Adam Walker (flute)
- Ralph Vaughan Williams: Fantasia on a Theme By Thomas Here’s John+SoL on YT
- Huw Watkins: Flute Concerto
- Arnold Bax: Tintagel Here’sJohn+SoL on YT
- William Walton: Partita for Orchestra Here’s John+SoL on YT
- Edward Elgar: Enigma Variations Here’s John conducting the RTE in the Enigma; and here’s John+SoL on YT
EXTRA! Available in PDF:
- “The Story So Far, with Conductor John Wilson”
- “The Story So Far; Or, Conductor John Wilson—His Limits”