Review: Reading Symphony premiere of Visconti guitar concerto

Posted on: December 6, 2016

“For the second 2016 subscription concert in a row, the Reading Symphony Orchestra dazzled the audience with a brand-new piece,” writes Susan L. Pena in Sunday’s (12/4) Reading Eagle (Pennsylvania). The Saturday performance of Dan Visconti’s Guitar Concerto, with soloist Jason Vieaux, followed “the RSO’s performance of Jonathan Leshnoff’s ‘Dark Bells’ in October…. Visconti’s 23-minute, one-movement piece … begins with the guitar alone…. The orchestra, with a gentle, high-pitched, sustained drone, enters, providing the soloist with a cushion of shimmering light and heat…. Riffs conjured the Middle East, the Mississippi Delta, Spain, India, Elizabethan England, even a bit of Hollywood thrown into the mix…. RSO music director Andrew Constantine led the orchestra through this complex and challenging piece with a sure hand…. The composer’s subtle use of percussion, the lovely guitar and flute duet (with principal flutist Kim Reighley), the touches of harp and brass, the conversations among styles foreign to each other, were a tour de force worthy of Vieaux’s eclectic taste and sensitivity to genre.” Also on the program were Dvorák’s Slavonic Rhapsody No. 3, Brahms’s Symphony No. 3, and Saint-Saens’s “Danse Bacchanale” from Samson and Dalila, the latter performed with musicians of the Reading Symphony Youth Orchestra.

Posted December 6, 2016