Orchestra of the Age of Enlightenment

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Vivaldi review

Sat 20 Feb 2010

The first review of our Vivaldi concerts at the Queen Elizabeth Hall is now online to read.

For this complete performance of L’estro Armonico we split the music over two hour-long concerts at 6.15pm and 8.45pm, with a free talk at 7.45pm. If you were there what did you think of this arrangement? Would you like to see more short concerts like this, or varied start times? Initial reaction seems to have been positive, though obviously it works better with some better repertoire than others.

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Your reviews

Wed 5 Aug 2009

A week or two ago we asked you for your reviews of our Fairy Queen prom. I’ll be honest – we weren’t exactly indundated! But we did recieve the one below – thank you! If anyone else has comments or reviews you can comment here or email us.

I thought the OAE were impeccable, and the Carolyn Sampson plaint as perfect a collaboration as one gets.  This, and some of the other songs saved the evening.

But the production had a spineless and somewhat aimless feel – it seemed over-liberal as a guise for not really having its visionary feet on the ground.  Neither was it out and out “Music Hall”: it was too prissy for that.

I think it sadly betrayed a Mark Morris’s influence (consciously or unconsciously I don’t know) (as in King Arthur) which it failed to pull off by being merely a poor and rather messy imitation of his great style.

The bunny costume scene was really appalling. The applause it raised just sycophancy or bemusement at best.*

But we were overall very glad we went,  Thank you!

Ben Gaskell

*Editors note : Not from me – I was in tears – of laughter!

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Rattle Review

Wed 17 Dec 2008

The OAE concert with Simon Rattle last Tuesday was, for me, the highlight of the orchestra’s concerts in 2008. Following on from their performance of Schumann’s Das Paradies und die Peri last December, the orchestra has gone on to explore the symphonies of the composer.

As a music student we are often told that these symphonies, are clumsy, problematic and badly orchestrated. However, Rattle and the orchestra made these symphonies make perfect sense. The performances of the first and third symphonies were the most poetic I have ever heard in a concert hall. There was some very unique phrasing from the strings, which, though it may not have been entirely “authentic”, really made the music seem personal. The first symphony was full of exciting energy from the very beginning and was brought to a thrilling close, at no point did this seem too heavy and awkward. The third, the most famous in the cycle was full of contrasting characters and colours, and the sombre fourth movement was very chilling, and played with great poise and control from the orchestra.

I look forward to the orchestra’s next project with Simon Rattle!

Chris Rawley, OAE Student Representative

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