Dvořák's Cello Concerto

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Date Location Price
30 Sep 2021 » 19:30 » Thursday Eldborg | Harpa 2.900 – 8.500 kr.
  • Program

    Halldór Smárason infinite image
    Antonín Dvořák Cello Concerto
    Joan Tower Concerto for Orchestra

  • Conductor

    Peter Oundjian

  • Soloist

    Jonathan Swensen

“One left Harpa half-dancing afterwards,” said the critic from Fréttablaðið after Peter Oundjian's 2014 performance with the Toronto Symphony in Reykjavík, adding that it had been “one of the finest classical concerts of the year.” Oundjian was first violinist with the Tokyo String Quartet for some 14 years and was Principal Conductor of the Toronto Symphony for about the same length of time. This is his third visit to Iceland, and like its predecessors, it promises an inspired performance. 

In recent years, cellist Jonathan Swensen has mopped up awards in international competition and has received the coveted Leonie Sonning Talent Prize in his native Denmark. On this programme he performs the beloved Dvořák Cello Concerto, a magnificent amalgamation of pyrotechnics and lyrical melancholy. 

Also on the programme is Joan Tower's dynamic Concerto for Orchestra, commissioned jointly in 1991 by the New York Philharmonic, the Chicago Symphony, and the St. Louis Symphony. A Grammy award winner, Tower was also the first woman to receive the coveted Grawemeyer Award for Music Composition. The critic from New York magazine called her Concerto for Orchestra “a colorful and engaging piece that will surely take its place beside the composer's much-played Sequoia and Silver Ladders.” 

The programme also features the premiere of a new work by Ísafjörður native Halldór Smárason, who has drawn well-deserved attention in recent years for his talent and versatility. The work infinite image was influenced by Sigurður Pálsson's poem Þoka (Fog), which is particularly graphic and colourful. Like the poem, the music hovers at the boundaries between the visible and the invisible, the audible and the inaudible.

A magnificent cello concerto and an award-winning American work.