At the risk of sounding like a smug Western Australian, it was easy to forget about the pandemic during West Australian Symphony Orchestra’s Carmina Buranaconcert. The orchestra played in top form while the soloists and conductor could have easily been plucked from any international musical centre, with only the socially distant audience seating and spaced out choristers indicating anything occurring beyond the concert hall.  For those missing international travel, Leonard Bernstein’s overture to his 1956 operetta Candidewas like a quick trip to Broadway; all sparkling brass, colourful winds, ceaseless strings, and catchy tunes. Conductor Jessica Gethin set a crackling tempo with an abundance of energy, and every section of the overture – from the lyrical middle section to the woodwind solo passages – was carried with cheerful momentum right until the end. Particularly impressive was the orchestra’s ability to maintain both a warmth of sound and pinpoint accuracy, with the final flourish of the overture balancing the two beautifully.

Jessica Gethin. Photograph supplied

WASO could probably perform Edvard Grieg’s Peer GyntSuite No 1 in their sleep at this point,...

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