Concert Review: Sinfonia Viva's New Year Gala at the Royal Concert Hall

Words: Kevin Stanley
Tuesday 02 January 2024
reading time: min, words

Kevin Stanley sees in the New Year with Sinfonia Viva at the Royal Concert Hall...

Sinfonia Viva NYE Nottingham

I’ve never been to the New Year’s Eve concert before, but I am delighted to be attending this year to experience the welcoming in of 2024 with a skilled and passionate orchestra performing some wonderful pieces of music.

The programme opens with the joyful and playful Italian girl in Algiers: Overture (Gioachino Rossini) followed by the fast and furious Slavonic Dance in C major, Op.46 no.1 (Antonin Dvorak). Pomp and Circumstance March no. 2 in A minor is perfect for New Year’s Eve as is Carmen: Habanera (Georges Bizet) which also features vocals by Soprano for the evening Francesca Chiejina who is spectacular in every way. Her sublime vocals radiant and versatile.

Nicholas Kok is the Conductor for the evening and amongst imparting interesting pieces of useful information about the music and the composers, he also tells a few humorous and fun stories and jokes. He is well known to the Nottingham audience and well liked.

The evening ends in the only way it could 

After the interval, several of the pieces of music played have some form of connection with New Year.

Oklahoma!, Overture (Rodgers & Hammerstein) is first which is very popular with the audience who enjoy clapping along in time, much to Kok’s delight. Likewise for Copenhagen Steam Railway Galop (Hans Christian Lumbye). Chiejina performs vocals once again for My Fair Lady: 'I Could Have Danced All Night' (Frederick Loewe), before the performance nears its conclusion with Egerien-Tänze, Op.134 (Johann Strauss I). 

The evening ends in the only way it could, with the traditional singing of Auld Lang Syne. I will admit that it’s never been a song that I’ve enjoyed. But tonight, played live by the Sinfonia Viva I must confess was the best that I’ve ever heard it. And everyone in the audience links arms and sings along to usher in the New Year!

Sinfonia Viva's New Year Gala played at the Royal Concert Hall on Sunday 31 December 2023

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