Wednesday 06 March

Romantic Classics with the RTÉ Concert Orchestra

RTÉ Concert Orchestra

Time 8:00pm
National Concert Hall Dublin

Tickets: from €15


RTÉ Concert Orchestra
Kerem Hasan conductor
Alim Beisembayev piano

Rossini William Tell Overture
Rachmaninov Piano Concerto No. 2
Elgar Enigma Variations

Whether from cinema, cartoons, commercials or the concert hall, the chances are you’ll know the amazing music being performed by the RTÉ Concert Orchestra this evening.

Rachmaninov’s ravishingly romantic 2nd Piano Concerto was a huge hit from the start, brought to a wider audience again in the classic British weepie Brief Encounter and in Eric Carmen’s 1970s All By Myself. It’s the perfect way to welcome Leeds International Piano Competition winner and BBC New Generation Artist Alim Beisembayev for his Irish debut – he won rave reviews at the BBC Proms last year when he stepped in at the last minute to perform this piece.

After a long day teaching violin, which he described as ‘like turning a grinding-stone with a dislocated shoulder’, Elgar sat down to doodle at the piano. His wife, Alice, commented on an attractive melody and this became the seed of the Enigma Variations. The piece was an immediate favourite with audiences, making his name around the world, and has remained so in the 125 years since, especially the stirring, emotional ‘Nimrod’. Elgar claimed there was an overall enigma to the piece but there’s no mystery to its appeal, with its gorgeous melodies and its mix of humour, lyricism and romance.

The William Tell Overture is best known for its galloping finale but the whole piece is richly evocative, musically conjuring up both sunrise and storm.

All this is conducted by the award-winning Kerem Hasan, one of the most exciting talents of his generation. As a De Volkskrant review noted: ‘The musicians applauded, this is the guy they are going to keep an eye on.’