“Last week’s Fox Valley Symphony concert was … a night of heartfelt gratitude for the 23-year tenure of maestro Brian Groner,” writes Christopher Profitt in Tuesday’s (5/8) Post Crescent (Appleton, Wisconsin). “It marked the end of a terrific run for him and for the symphony, and the audience let their appreciation be known from the start…. Berlioz’s Overture to The Roman Carnival was energetic, rhythmically tight, and wonderfully balanced. The English horn solo … was expressive and lush…. Then came a real treat from Minnesota composer Libby Larsen, her De Trois world premiere commissioned and premiered by the Fox Valley Symphony in tribute to Maestro Groner’s career. It was splendid, colorful with hints of minimalism, and strong sectional writing for brass…. Sibelius’ Symphony No. 2 in D minor … demonstrated some of the finest ensemble playing I’ve heard from the FVSO…. In particular, the brass sectional work was better than ever: the crescendos were lively (but never brash), the horns and trombones were especially tight, and the low brass … provided a solid foundation.… Every section was solid in its own right, but as an ensemble, they’ve never played better.” Also performing in the concert was violinist Joshua Bell.
Posted May 9, 2018