Tuesday, October 9, 2012

From Halle to Hallé

The Hallé Orchestra are in town, performing two concerts in two days in two different venues with two different repertoire. We've helped a fair bit, so great that they've been chosen to open this year's Beijing Music Festival. 
A concert of two halves: Strauss and Tchaikovsky in part one, with the amazing Maxim Vengerov on violin; Dvorak and Elgar in the part two, plus soprano Sumi Jo performing excerpts from Verdi's Rigoletto and Offenbach's Tales of Hoffman. She was a hoot. Came on in Cinderella dresses, played the marionette (conductor Sir Mark Elder had to 'wind her up') and played to the crowd. To be honest, she all but sidelined the orchestra, but it was fun.
The Hallé are, I think, the oldest orchestra in the UK. For some reason, I've never really wondered why they are so called. Just looked it up: he was a German called Karl Halle, who settled in Britain in 1848, changed him name to Charles Hallé, and started an orchestra in Manchester.

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