The I, CULTURE Orchestra’s Concert on BBC 3
small, The I, CULTURE Orchestra’s Concert on BBC 3, ico proba 23 sierpnia 2013 1_7066603.jpg, ICO, general rehearsal before the concert in Gdańsk, 23 August 2013, phot. Konrad Ćwik/ IAM
On 18th September, 2014, at 20:30 CET, the I, CULTURE Orchestra’s concert at the Edinburgh International Festival will be rebroadcast by BBC 3. The performance will also available to view online.
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The concert took place on 17th August, 2014, and the orchestra was conducted by Kirill Karabits from Ukraine. The programme included Andrzej Panufnik’s Sinfonia Elegaica, Dmitri Shostakovich’s Symphony No. 7, also called The Leningrad Symphony, and Aram Khachaturian’s Sabre Dance. The concert received excellent reviews:
A good performance can leave us with a feeling, an emotion we understand the composer felt while carefully arranging his masterpiece. The I, Culture Orchestra, and its conductor, Kirill Karabits, left us not only with a feeling, but with a vision - wrote the Herald Scotland.
According to Kate Molleson of The Guardian:
...what was so impressive about I, Culture's delivery was its subtlety, restraint and plain-speaking eloquence.
She also wrote about the orchestra’s conductor:
The Ukrainian conductor Kirill Karabits was a tremendously gracious guide: he kept the ensemble disciplined and encouraged expressive gestures, but often he let the players find their own way.
And this is what The Arts Desk wrote about the execution of Shostakovich’s Symphony No. VII:
As the symphony blazed its way to the affirmation of its conclusion it felt that a work so often marginalised by critics for its lack of emotional depth was here being celebrated for the simplicity and power of its music alone. It seemed inevitable that as the thud of the great bass drum marked the end, so the near-capacity audience should erupt with the most enthusiastic applause that I have yet heard this Edinburgh Festival, with each section of the orchestra as they were brought to their feet receiving ever louder accolades, particularly the young man on the side drum and the athletic young woman next to him on the timpani.
The I, Culture Orchestra is a project established by the Adam Mickiewicz Institute in 2011. Each year, under the supervision of distinguished instrumentalists and conductors, the orchestra is formed of young musicians from Poland and the Eastern Partnership states: Armenia, Azerbaijan, Belarus, Georgia, Moldova, and Ukraine.
A few hundred young people have already performed in the ranks of the I, CULTURE Orchestra. They were educated by experienced tutors – instrumentalists with years of practice. The orchestra is led by deserving conductors with long careers (such as Sir Neville Marriner, a senior of the European conducting), as well as very young ones (like Ilyich Rivas, who took charge of the ICO at the age of 19). What all of them share are outstanding musical skills and a belief that music can transcend barriers of language and politics.
Sources: press materials, ed. fl, 17.9.2014, transl. szm 18.9.2014