At first glance, the repertoire for the West Australian Symphony Orchestra’s latest Masters Series concert appeared a little threadbare, with a program comprised of just Mozart’s Clarinet Concerto and Elgar’s First Symphony. However, WASO’s programming instincts were on the mark. The two masterworks – each written at the respective composer’s height of compositional maturity – made for an engaging evening of music, as the charming brilliance of Mozart’s concerto served as the light to the darkness of Elgar’s grandiose, dramatic symphony. To pad out the program would only add unnecessary deadweight to the performance; sometimes less (if that term can be applied to these particular works) is more.

Andreas Ottensamer. Photo © Katja Ruge/Decca

WASO’s intelligent program was complemented by two highly anticipated guest artists; the internationally renowned conductor Mark Wigglesworth, and Andreas Ottensamer, Principal Clarinet of the Berlin Philharmonic. Keen to capitalise on such anticipation (and Ottensamer’s prominent social media presence), WASO even hosted an ‘Instagram takeover’, which saw the leadup to the performance documented on its Instagram page by the clarinettist himself. Whether it be the star power of the soloists, savvy social media strategy, or repertoire, turnout saw Perth...

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