Stories » Sarah Chang shines in Calgary Philharmonic's Fiesta Festival finale / Calgary Herald

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Sarah Chang shines in Calgary Philharmonic's Fiesta Festival finale / Calgary Herald

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This final program of Latin American music was devoted to Argentina, the country of the tango. And it was tango-inflected music that formed the spine of this highly enjoyable, fun-filled concert - a gala-style closing to the entire festival. Each of the works was very warmly received, and each work was introduced by apt, witty comments from Minczuk, who was clearly in a celebratory mood.  The orchestra too was on its toes - so to speak - and delivered idiomatic renditions of music that, despite the common tango connection, ranged widely in style.

The tangos ranged from orchestral versions of traditional-style tangos to works in which the tango element was a backdrop to music of a more high-art character. This last element was present in the two-movement Last Round by the prominent Argentine-American composer Osvaldo Golijov. A work of remarkable imagination written on the death of Astor Piazzolla, and written in a modern style not always compelling to a CPO audience, the Golijov piece was very warmly received, Minczuk having to return to the stage, so strong was the response.

But this was only the start. The star of the evening was clearly violinist Sarah Chang, who performed a solo violin version of Piazolla's well-known Four Seasons, a work that in its title riffs off of Vivaldi's even more famous piece.  In this version, however, arranger Leonid Desyatnikov cleverly introduced elements of the Vivaldi Four Seasons into his transcription, the entire work a remarkable translation of the piece.    READ THE FULL Calgary Herald REVIEW