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									Celebrating Cities on latitude 60°N                                                                          German Romantics
     his year’s City of                                                             Each half of the prog-   at Longborough
T    London Festival spot-
lighted music from the
                                                                                ramme contained a piece
                                                                                for trombone and strings     Festival Opera
cities on latitude 60°N;                                                        which Mr Lindberg con-
Kirkwall, Oslo, Stock-                                                          ducted from the trom-          n what is proving a rewarding adjunct to its
holm, Helsinki, Tallinn
and St Petersburg, and as
                                                                                bone, and this somewhat
                                                                                curbed his exuberance
                                                                                                             I fully-staged productions, Longborough
                                                                                                             Festival Opera now includes in its summer
Sweden assumed the                                                              and made his conduct-        seasons programmes which allow it to explore
presidency of the Euro-                                                         ing a lot clearer and        aspects of the operatic repertoire in concert-
pean Union on 1 July,                                                           more comfortable to          performance. This such presentation on June
the Festival did not miss                                                       watch. In the first half,    12 revolved around two persecuted tenors, in
the opportunity to cele-                                                        the trombone piece was       the roles of Florestan (Beethoven’s Fidelio) and
brate the occasion on                                                           a special adaptation of      Siegmund (Wagner’s Die Walküre), beefy,
that date with its only                                                         Arvo Part’s Fratres for      heroic roles which make huge demands upon
concert this year in the                                                        trombone and strings,        the singer.
Great Hall of the Guild-                                                        and in the second half,          It’s just as well that we only heard excerpts
hall. It was held in the                                                        Mr Linberg made every-       from these two operas, the Beethoven in bits
presence of the Crown                                                           one remember the final       and pieces, the Wagner restricted to Act One,
Prince of Sweden, a plethora of ambassadors,           piece of the concert – his own 25-minute              perfectly self-standing in itself, since the
clerics, politicians and dignitaries from the          composition, Kundraan. The programme ann-             chosen soloist was obviously uncomfortable in
Nordic world, with music from Nordic                   ounces it as the first UK performance, but does       pacing himself throughout the task.
composers played by the Nordic Chamber Orch-           not offer who Kundraan is or was, or what it              The young New Zealand tenor Andrew
estra with a Swedish conductor.                        means. Is it a figment of Lindberg’s imagination,     Sritheran looks good on stage and engages
    The Norwegian contribution to the concert          for throughout it certainly ran riot? To the          well both with his fellow-performers and the
was Grieg’s four-movement Holberg Suite, in            strings, he added his own shouted text, of            audience. But almost immediately from his
which some of the tempos were not secured until        mildly shocking nature, a
								
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