HBSO to stage major anniversary concert Friday
The HCMC Ballet Symphony Orchestra and Opera (HBSO) will host a gala concert on Friday night to mark the 22nd anniversary of its first performance on September 9, 1994.
Conductor/Meritorious Artist Tran Vuong Thach told the Daily that the upcoming show featuring Camille Saint-Saens and Antonin Dvorak will be opened by a festive atmosphere of Antonin Dvorak’s Carnival Overture and followed by two leading classical works in the world, Saint-Saens’s Violin Concerto in B minor and Antonin Dvorak’s Symphony No.7 in D Minor.
This is also a rare chance for the local audience to admire a classical piece of France as HBSO normally performs works by Russian, German, and Austrian composers. HBSO has chosen to play two pieces by Saint-Saens and Dvorak as it aims to gradually improve the performance skills of its artists by staging such hard classical works.
Thach said HBSO has invited Nguyen Huu Khoi Nam, a leading violinist of Vietnam and a resident violinist at the National Orchestra of France, to perform in the first half of the show with the concerto for violin, one of the key pieces for violin soloist in a symphony orchestra.
“The invitation of Nam will be a good chance for local musical players to learn and improve knowledge and skills,” Thach added.
The 19th century saw Romantic composers pushing the boundaries of music, challenging musicians and audiences alike, while respecting the rule of tonality. Among them were France’s Camille Saint-Saens and the Czech Republic’s Antonin Dvorak.
Saint-Saens’s Violin Concerto in B minor is arguably his most popular out of his three violin concertos. Within the standard three-movement framework, Saint-Saens explored the relationship between the solo violin and the accompanying orchestra, allowing the soloist to show off technical abilities and creating a firework of sonic colors that would later influence other French composers, most notably Debussy and Ravel of the French Impressionism. The music of the work demands the finesse of the soloist and the orchestra to create magical musical moments. The audience will get to enjoy this glorious work through the talent of violinist Nguyen Huu Khoi Nam, and the HBSO Symphony Orchestra.
Dvorak composed a total of nine symphonies, of which the final being the most popular. According to John Clapham, a specialist on Dvorak, the 7th symphony is “without a doubt… must surely be Dvorak’s greatest symphony.” The work has qualities that clearly show the influence of Brahms, notably the 3rd Symphony that Dvorak had reportedly heard and admired. The 40-minute symphony was inspired by the strength of the people of Czech who were facing the major political struggles as well as his own loss, reflected in his footnote in his sketch of the 2nd movement. Composed for the Philharmonic Society of London, Dvorak led the premiere performance of the work in 1855 at St. James’s Hall in London.
Vietnamese violinist Nguyen Huu Khoi Nam is a founding member of the “Parisian New Generation” string orchestra, the Turina Trio, the Impresa Quartet (Winner of the FNAPEC Chamber Competition in Paris).
Maestro – Meritorious Artist Tran Vuong Thach graduated from the HCMC Conservatory of Music in 1984 majoring in violin performance and started his teaching career at the Violin Department of Symphonic Instruments. From 1986 to 1990 he played in the Conservatory Chamber Orchestra. From 1990 to 1996 he studied at the Royal Conservatory of Liège, Belgium and the Maastricht Academy of Music in the Netherlands. From 1996 up to now, he is the principal conductor of the HBSO.
HBSO was established in 1993 and its first concert was directed by Professor and People’s Artist Ta Bon, Meritorious Artist Nguyen Minh Cam, Meritorious Artist Vu Viet Cuong, People’s Artist Tran Kim Quy and Meritorious Artist Tran Phu. September 9 was chosen to be the anniversary day of HBSO since 1994. After 20 years of establishment, the theater has gathered professional artists in three majors — symphony orchestra, opera and ballet. Some typical works of HBSO include opera The Magic Flute, oratorios Creation and Messiah, ballets Nutcracker, Cinderella, Coppelia, Carmen, and other symphonic works by Mozart, Beethoven, Brahms, Dvorak, Tchaikovsky and Haydn.
HBSO has three regular shows on the 9th, 19th and 29th of month to entertain the audience and create chances for local artists to show their talent. Conductor Thach said HBSO has been keen on its plan to bring classical music closer to the audience, especially young people, by offering special ticket prices for university students and free music lectures to improve their knowledge and promote the love of academic art.
Tickets to the Friday concert are priced at VND550,000, VND400,000, VND350,000, VND200,000 and VND80,000 (students only). The show will take place at the Opera House at 7 Lam Son Square in HCMC’s District 1.
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