The BSO has been one of the nation’s most active orchestras in the difficult last 18 months, with live concerts round Wessex and at the Proms, and with beautifully streamed on-line presentations from Lighthouse in Poole. However, it was still deeply cheering to gather again to hear, to see and to experience live symphonic music together.

With Kirill Karabits back on the podium, and Swiss pianist Louis Schwizgebel making a joyous return, the 21/22 season rocketed into life with a programme full of vibrant and tuneful offerings.

A selection from Bizet’s L’Arlesienne Suites made a perfect opener and set the tone for Ravel’s Piano Concerto in G. The outer movements of this concerto with their sharp, jazzy crack were completely life-affirming, while in the haunting slow movement Mr Schwizgebel held the hall completely under his enchanting spell.

After the interval, the tone became a little more sombre with Prokofiev’s Autumnal Sketch. This is a work that Mr Karabits has recorded with the BSO and which, through its miraculous instrumentation, manages to convey the sweet sadness of this season.

Ravel returned to complete the evening with his orchestration of Mussorgsky’s Pictures at an Exhibition. The BSO provided a truly memorable performance of this happily popular work. The sound was rich yet detailed. The immediacy of the acoustic in Lighthouse’s Concert Hall was part of the reminder of how superior is the experience of live music – especially as part of such an enthusiastic audience. One of Mr Karabits’ great abilities, which was definitely on show here, is nailing the perfect tempo to let every instrumental effect register, while balancing forward momentum with time to savour the telling moment.

Here’s to the prospect of sharing the BSO’s offerings each Wednesday evening in Poole until 15th December – and into the New Year once the Spring 2022 season is announced. Get seats while there are some left!

Thank you, Tom! 

See concert highlights below! Don’t forget too the full concert is available to livestream for 30 days here


We also received this review from The Fine Times Recorder:

“What this concert emphatically demonstrated was that there is simply nothing to beat live orchestral music […] the BSO is back, and never in better form.”

To find out what else we have coming up this autumn season see our What’s On page