The Mouth – Bournemouth – Poole – Christchurch

Colour and Light to shine on the BSO’s concert of musical Impressionism and virtuoso piano playing in Poole

Bournemouth Symphony Orchestra under the French conductor and Music Director of the Quebec Symphony Orchestra, Fabien Gabel, will perform works by Debussy, Chopin and D’Indy at Lighthouse, Poole on Wednesday 25 October at 7.30pm. Joining them to play Chopin’s Piano Concerto No.1 will be former BBC New Generation Artist Louis Schwizgebel. The Swiss-Chinese pianist was born into a family of artists in Geneva in 1987 and is repeatedly praised for the clarity of his playing and his exceptional virtuosity. Schwizgebel won the Geneva International Music Competition when aged just 17 and then in 2012 he won second prize at the prestigious Leeds International Piano Competition. The BSO is delighted to welcome this remarkable pianist as he makes his debut performance with the Orchestra. Schwizgebel’s interpretation of Chopin’s First Piano Concerto earlier this year with the City of Birmingham Symphony Orchestra earned him glowing reviews from the critics with The Independent praising his “poised elegance”, whilst Bachtrack commended his “considerable virtuosity.”

Debussy composed Printemps in Rome during the winter of 1886-7. He wrote, “The idea I had was to compose a work in a very special colour which should cover a great range of feelings. It is to be called Printemps, not a descriptive Printemps, but a human one.” It was originally scored for orchestra and wordless chorus, but the manuscript was lost and it was not until 1912 that it was re-orchestrated by his friend and collaborator, Henri Büsser, under Debussy’s supervision.  Printemps foreshadows Debussy’s later works with his gentle use of pentatonic melodies and oriental exoticism.

Chopin’s Piano Concerto No.1 is a showcase for the traveling virtuoso; in fact the celebrated pianist Martha Argerich said that “the virtuosity has to be an understatement”. The first movement is grand and eloquent, beginning with a grand orchestral sweep before the entrance of the piano with a dazzling display of technical brilliance. The second movement is one of Chopin’s early nocturnes, before the pianistically difficult finale with its cascades of piano ripples, scales and sequences all the way to a jubilant conclusion. Chopin himself performed the premiere in Warsaw in 1830.

This beautiful and evocative programme continues with the wonderfully descriptive La Forêt Enchantée (The Enchanted Forest), one of D’Indy’s first orchestral scores, dating from 1878. Also known as “Harald,” it is based on a ballad by the German poet Johann Ludwig Uhlan. D’Indy’s music is sumptuous, yet luminous and transparently scored, and tells the story of a knight and his fellow warriors encountering a troupe of elves as they ride through the forest. The concert will conclude with Debussy’s symphonic masterpiece, La Mer, a vivid evocation of the sea in all its variety. “I love the sea and I have listened to it passionately”, Debussy wrote, but he was in landlocked Burgundy when he began work on La Mer during the summer of 1903. He did in fact complete it by the coast – not in France, but in the Grand Hotel, Eastbourne, whilst on holiday with his lover, the singer Emma Bardac, later to become his wife. The work is a series of three symphonic sketches for large orchestra and regarded by many as a masterpiece of Impressionism, a word that Claude Debussy actually hated. The premiere of La Mer was given in Paris in October 1905.

A free ‘Meet the Music’ pre-concert talk will take place from 6.30pm in the Concert Hall, providing fascinating insights into the works featured in the programme and the composers behind them before they are performed. Throughout the season there will also be a range of supporting online resources on the BSO’s website and social media channels.


Event: Colour and Light Concert with Loius Schwizgebel

Venue: Lighthouse, Poole’s Centre for the Arts, Kingland Road, Poole BH15 1UG

Date: Wednesday 25 October 2017

Time: 7.30pm

Ticket Prices: £43 / £35 / £32 / £28 / £25 / £15.50 (a £1.75 booking fee per ticket is payable for telephone and online bookings; concessions available)

To Buy Tickets: Please visit or call or visit the Lighthouse Box Office on 01202 280000

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