Tuesday, April 10, 2018

Sergio Mims: Independent.co.uk: Chineke!, Royal Festival Hall, London, review: BME orchestra re-open Queen Elizabeth Hall

Chineke! reopen the Queen Elizabeth Hall 
(Mark Allan)

Sergio A. Mims forwards this 5-star review of a Chineke! concert at Queen Elizabeth Hall:

Michael Church

Tuesday 10 April 2018

The final concert before the hall’s closure had been given by a Black and Minority Ethnic (BME) orchestra named Chineke!, giving its first-ever public performance. Who better, therefore, to reopen the hall than that same orchestra three years on, with its doughty founder Chi-Chi Nwanoku still leading the double basses? Under the direction of Anthony Parnther, they too have subjected themselves to refurbishment: technically they have come on by leaps and bounds.

First they played a youthful work by Samuel Coleridge-Taylor – England’s first BME composer –entitled Ballade in A minor for Orchestra, whose debts to Dvorak and Elgar didn’t obscure its freshness; then came Dream Song, a new work by Daniel Kidane with a setting of Martin Luther King’s ‘I have a dream’ speech. 

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