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Norwegian Wind Orchestra

Ole Edvard Antonsen, conductor and Trumpet Soloist

Guest conductor Odd Terje Lysebo

Soloist: Øystein Baadsvik, tuba

Joaquin Rodrigo (1901-1999) Per la Flor del Lliri Blau
Daniel Nelson (*1965) Metallephonic Remix for tuba and wind ensemble
Andre Jolivet (1905-1974)Concerto No. 2 for Trumpet
Stig Nordhagen (*1966)Symphony No. 1 for wind band, Solitude Standing

Monday evening was another well balanced programme, music from Spain, America, France and Norway, conducted by one of the world’s virtuoso trumpet soloists. I first heard Per la Flor del Lliri Blau at the Riva del Garda competition, and I was bowled over. Here I felt was a major romantic tone poem by an important composer. I think it needs careful handling; it is heavily scored and the architectural shape is not always clear; furthermore some of the material is a little naïve and needs subtle phrasing, but this was a fine performance by an excellent orchestra.

I was looking forward to the Tuba Concert because Øystein Baadsvik is such a fine player. However, I found the Remix confusing, some of it aggressive and repetitive, very much a concertante piece with the tuba sharing the limelight with the orchestra – another piece to be listened to with care when Mark Morette’s CDs arrive.

Conductor Ole Edvard Antonsen became the trumpet soloist in the second half, WASBE President – elect, Odd Terje Lysebo, taking over the baton in a finely judged and immaculately balanced performance of the Jolivet Concerto no 2 for Trumpet.

I have long had a fantasy that in most countries there are composers writing really good major works for wind band which are non-commercial and which are largely unknown to the conductors, bands, audiences and publishers; in Netherlands perhaps Bernard van Beurden, in China Chen Qian, in Sweden Csaba Deak, in Germany Richard Heller and Frank Zabel, while in Norway, my fantasy is filled by by Stig Nordhagen, a clarinettist with the orchestra in Kristiansand, whose Euphonium Concerto I really enjoyed in 2003 in Sweden. His Symphony No. 1 for Wind Band, Solitude Standing is certainly another major addition to the repertoire, one of the outstanding works of the Conference.