Personally I went for the Beethoven Symphony, and that really was the piece I enjoyed most of the evening. I did appreciate the introductions by CBC Radio personality Eric Friesen, and Maestro Zukerman was enthusiastic and personable in a way I had not expected.
The first piece demonstrated the composer's protest against war and oppression. Being written in 1963, I classify it as modern music, which is an area I'm still working to appreciate. It had its moments, but was not my cup of tea.
The section I know best of Beethoven's 2nd is the opening of the fourth movement. This contains the "back flip" theme, so named by Rick Phillips in his pre-concert chat. It is used as the theme for the NACOcast, so I found it quite fitting it was the NAC orchestra performing the piece. I believe the host of the podcast, Christopher Millard, was indeed playing first bassoon. But in addition to the familiar theme, I quite enjoyed the entire symphony.
|Some of the names I know|
Post concert there was a group playing in the lobby for the "after party". They were quite enjoyable, although completely different from the classical music just experienced. It was a great evening, even if I didn't see Christopher Millard at said party to tell him how much I enjoy his podcasts. I can tick another Beethoven Symphony off my list as well. I'm not sure I have a favourite, the latest one I've heard seems to hold that position for a while.
Thanks for coming to Toronto NACO, hope to see you again next year!