Ulster Youth Orchestra
Ulster Hall, Saturday 22nd August 2015
This summer concert was a great showcase for our young musicians. These teenagers coping with school work and exams obviously took to the stage of the Ulster Hall with great pleasure.
Smart as paint and well disciplined they played under the conductor Takuo Yuasa who brought the best out of his orchestra.
Three pieces; Stanford Irish Rhapsody No.4 Op.141 ‘The Fisherman of Lough Neagh and what he saw …’ and after the interval, Saint-Saens Symphony No. 3 in C minor, Op 78. But it was the opening number that took my attention, Liszt Symphonic Poem: Les Preludes. This was like a day in Northern Ireland, there were strong breezes, turbulent undercurrents with violas, bass, violins then the full orchestra with brass and kettle drums playing up a storm. After the storm come gentle rain, a pastoral period, a period of calm before the sun blazes out with the notes filling the hall before a glorious sunset involving the entire Youth Orchestra.
A word about Donal McCann who played the Mullholland organ in the Saint-Saens Symphony. Only 15 years of age, he is currently the organ scholar in St. George’s Parish Church and recently was awarded the Andrew Lloyd Webber Foundation Scholarship to Eton College. A name to watch.
By Anne Hailes