Tea & Trumpets with the Vancouver Symphony Orchestra: Opera Goes Symphonic

Dates and Venue 26 January 2012, 2pm | Orpheum Theatre

Conductor Pierre Simard, Host Christopher Gaze

Programme Barber of Seville: Overture; Don Pasquale: So anchio la virtu magica; Carmen: Je dis que rien ne m'épouvante; Près des remparts de Séville; The Bartered Bride: Dance of the Comedians; Rusalka: Mesícku na nebi hlubokém; La bohème: Quando me'n vo

Reviewer Michael Pink

A classical music mainstay of the Vancouver Symphony Orchestra is the Tea and trumpets series which enchanted the audience again on January 26th.

Under the charming and informed narration of Shakespearean actor Christopher Gaze, of Bard on the Beach fame, the afternoon programme featured stellar classics.

Pierre Simard, assistant conductor of the VSO, guided the performance with the featured guest, Soprano, Nadya Blanchette. The music flowed with vitality and precision and brought forth particularly enthusiastic applause. Simard is a master of symphonic harmony. The holder of five Conservatory Prizes from the Conservatoire de Musique in Montreal, he is also the Artistic Director of the Symphony Orchestra in Drummondville, Quebec.

Blanchette is a leading international soprano who charms audiences with her sonorous voice and charismatic stage presence. A multiple award winner, she is currently touring a new show entitled French Kiss, which includes opera arias and immortal songs.

Blanchettes version of Song To The Moon was a tour de force performance that vibrated with emotion. The poet Keats wrote that, ‘ A Thing of Beauty is a Joy Forever’ and such is the experience of listening to this soul stirring classic by Blanchette.

Of course no commentary about the performance would be complete without a grateful bow to the talented yet unsung musicians of the Vancouver Symphony Orchestra who always set a high standard of musical excellence.

© 2012 Michael Pink