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the metropolitan orchestra : scheherazade punch


The Metropolitan Orchestra presented three outstanding works in this packed-out concert at Marrickville Town Hall on Sunday 12th November  2023 : Vaughn Williams’  Fantasia on a Theme of Thomas Tallis, the world premiere of Jim Coyle’s Punch and Rimsky-Korsakov’s Scheherazade.

Fantasia on a Theme by Thomas Tallis is a one-movement work for string orchestra using fugues to intertwine and overlap the musical themes written by the English Renaissance composer Thomas Tallis. 

This opening piece filled the space with splendid echoing embraces. The acoustics in the Hall are excellent, allowing the some 50 musicians to mesmerise the audience. This full-bodied work was transcendent.

The Vaughn Williams was followed by a quite different work, Jim Coyle’s Punch for theatre organ and orchestra. Organ soloist Bev Kennedy stepped gracefully to the Wurlitzer and with the orchestra gave the audience full surround-sound entertainment. 

The second half of the program was Rimsky-Korsakov’s Scheherazade. It was composed in 1888, based on One Thousand and One Nights . With dazzling orchestration, this is Rimsky-Korsakov’s most popular work. The Metropolitan’s Orchestra’s colourful full-bodied performance of this much loved piece was thoroughly entertaining. The oboe and violin soloists were excellent.

Sarah-Grace Williams is the Metropolitan Orchestra’s founding Artistic Director and conductor. Formed in 2009 and based in Sydney, the orchestra has presented more than 650 concerts including their acclaimed Met and Family Cushion Concert series, an annual Chamber Music Festival, free concerts, national and international tours.


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