Opera Scotland

Te Deum, op103 1987Scottish National Orchestra

Read more about the opera Te Deum, op103

This concert, part of the SNO's Aberdeen Proms season at the end of its main winter programme, began with two short items of railway music. The first, extremely familiar, was Honegger's orchestral tone poem Pacific 231. This was followed by an astonishing rarity, a pièce d'occasion by Berlioz. His Chant des Chemins de Fer was commissioned to celebrate the opening of the city of Lille's new station in 1846. Almost entirely cheerful and frivolous, barring a brief prayer in the middle, it proved to be inoffensive, but not particularly memorable.

After those, the Aberdeen Proms Chorus, formed specially for this season, gave another rare work, the Te Deum, op103 by Antonín Dvořák. Following the interval, the evening was completed by Mahler's Symphony no5 in C sharp minor.

The Te Deum was the first composition that the composer conducted in America, giving the first performance in Carnegie Hall. The soprano soloist was a New Yorker, Clementine de Vere, who later spent several years touring Britain as a leading soprano of the Moody-Manners company.

This was a highly enjoyable programme, given under the direction of the young guest conductor Jacek Kasprcyk, from Poland. There were three young singers - tenor Colin Hills for this Berlioz, and soprano Fiona Lindsay and bass John Hearne in the Dvořák. 

Performance DatesTe Deum, op103 1987

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Music Hall, Aberdeen | Aberdeen

14 May, 19.30

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