Columbus Symphony Orchestra’s works by 3 composers wows audience

Jennifer Koh
The Columbus Dispatch

A world premiere, a world-class soloist and one of the wildest symphonies the world has ever known blew the roof off the Ohio Theatre Friday night when Rossen Milanov led the Columbus Symphony Orchestra and violin soloist Jennifer Koh in works by Andreia Pinto-Correia, Sibelius and Berlioz.  

Commissioned by and dedicated to the Columbus Symphony Orchestra, Pinto-Correia’s Cipres, inspired by poetry of Spanish poet Federico Garcia Lorca, was a radiant wash of color. The violins began with only the faintest thread of sound, growing almost imperceptibly. Out of this came a depiction of static water; eerie, towering cypresses; then poplars, then willows, emerging in bristling dissonances.
Jennifer Koh dazzled in the Sibelius Violin Concerto. In the concerto’s fist movement, Koh’s first cadenza was clean and evenly paced, and she paced her phrases at the recapitulation with near surgical precision. The low end of Koh’s sound was lovely in the richly romantic melody at the beginning of the second movement. Throughout the movement, the orchestra followed her like a shadow.

From the jaunty opening chords of the finale, the musicians sustained an understated intensity from peak to peak. The performance brought a standing ovation, which brought Koh back for a gorgeous encore performance of the Prelude of Bach’s Solo Violin Partita in D minor.  

The introduction of Berlioz’s Symphonie fantastique was an evocatively hushed dreamscape that opened onto a fever-pulsed performance of the symphony’s idee fixe.
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