8 October 2018
The 7th concert of the Concepción Symphony season started with a minute of silence for maestro Vicente Bianchi, who passed away a few days earlier. Coincidentally, the program, as announced at the beginning of this year, included one of his works, whose performance turned into a timely homage. So, a crowded UdeC Theater was able to remember the dear maestro while listening to his “Tonada rítmica”, composed when Bianchi was experiencing his early fame as a radio orchestra conductor. With an ever precise and elegant baton, Japanese maestro Koji Kawamoto navigated with ease through our typical rhythms and drew all the shine and color from this score, whose attraction lies precisely in its accomplished orchestration.
Two symphonies, one by a mature Haydn and the other by a youthful Schubert, also allowed to appreciate the virtues of the Japanese conductor, who drew a clear but not exaggerated border between the styles of these works. In Haydn’s Symphony No. 92, he made the textures transparent and fostered a sharp and lively phrasing and articulation, in line with the trends of historically informed performance. In Schubert’s First Symphony, he created a sturdier sound and smoother textures, especially in the central movements. The orchestra responded with admirable flexibility to these diverse approaches.
But the program’s main attraction were Debussy’s and Ravel’s works for harp and orchestra, with soloist Patricia Reyes. Maestro Kawamoto led a flexible, transparent and detailed accompaniment for the renowned member of the Concepción Symphony, who traversed with imposing sound and outstanding technical poise these complex scores, created to display all the capabilities of two different models of harp. This year, the musician has been focusing on her career as a soloist, giving concerts with other Chilean orchestras, an effort that was deservedly awarded with the generous and emotive applause from “her” audience and “her” orchestra.