Vaughan Williams and symphonies by Beethoven & Brahms

Few pieces of music conjure up the pictorial as effortlessly as The Lark Ascending, a transcendent work in which the eponymous lark, represented by a solo violin, soars ever higher, weaving arabesques against a watercolour sky. English-born Emma McGrath, TSO Concertmaster, performs the solo part in this classic work of English tone painting.

Beethoven and Brahms, two titans of 19th-century music, sit shoulder to shoulder with their respective Fourth Symphonies. Beethoven’s Fourth reveals the composer in jovial form. High spirited and energetic, it combines the clarity of Haydn with the feisty momentum of Beethoven’s “heroic” period. Brahms grappled mightily with the symphony, but having mastered the genre, produced an extraordinary succession of works culminating in the Fourth. Towering and profound, Brahms’s Fourth is not only beautifully crafted, it is beauty itself.

Performers in this concert