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'To Breathe Now' /Oxford Philharmonic Orchestra /Oxford, UK

  • Sheldonian Theatre Oxford United Kingdom (map)

It took Brahms 14 years to write his first symphony, but it was worth the wait. The piece launches with a compelling edifice of climbing strings, plunging winds and pounding drums. What follows is a work of gripping turbulence, deep conviction and exuberant joy. Before the Brahms, we welcome a friend and true aristocrat of the violin Maxim Vengerov to play the radiant song of love that is Max Bruch’s Violin Concerto No. 1, where the weave of a single instrument floats, battles and rhapsodises against an orchestral mass that supports and cajoles. To open, the first performance of the orchestral version of the third movement of Grace-Evangeline Mason’s work ‘Upon Weightless Wings’ entitled ‘To Breathe Now’.