Belfast Telegraph

Ulster Orchestra's performance of powerful and absorbing Haydn Symphony

By Alf McCreary

The Ulster Orchestra ended its successful season of Tuesday lunchtime concerts in the Ulster Hall, under its music director Raphael Payare.

Haydn's Symphony No 6 in D major Le Matin, rarely heard here, was a good choice for a sunny summer day in Belfast, which was a rarity itself. The symphony, with careful steering by Payare, was absorbing and there was much fine playing in the second movement and finale.

The orchestra's season has been marked by imaginative programming with great contrasts, and that between the Haydn and Wagner's Prelude and Liebestod from Tristan und Isolde could not have been greater.

The Liebestod, or 'Love Death', marks the climax of the opera as Isolde sings over Tristan's body, and it contains some of the most beautiful and powerfully sensual music in the entire repertoire.

The printed programme was ahead of itself in announcing a Shostakovich Symphony.

This will come on Friday evening at the same venue when the orchestra finishes its main season with Rafael Payare in a performance of Shostakovich's Fifth Symphony, as well as music by Britten and Mahler.

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