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Nigel Kennedy plays Vivaldi Four Seasons at Bristol's Colston Hall / theguardian review

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If public perception is that he is defined by his relationship with Vivaldi's Four Seasons, then, reasons violinist Nigel Kennedy, the best way to show how he's moved on is through that same work. This is the rationale for The New Four Seasons and Kennedy's current tour, which opened at Bristol's Colston Hall.

Kennedy's 1989 recording of Vivaldi's work with the English Chamber Orchestra has sold over 3m copies and is one of the bestselling classical records of all time. Today, Kennedy, spiky-haired and clad in trainers with a dayglo spats effect, looks little different. Aston Villa had drawn the day before so he's not overly hyped up, but he's still a mass of contradictions. When not playing, his movements are puppeteer-jerky, and the banter is relentlessly matey, with so much fist bumping that one fears for all the string players' knuckles. And yet when bow meets fiddle – Cremona, nothing electric here – he becomes real again, virtuosity intact, the sound compelling, the effect totally disarming.   READ THE FULL guardian REVIEW