Rachmaninoff and Dvorak with the Presidential Symphony Orchestra and guests
By Heidi Trautmann
Spring in Cyprus is unthinkable without the Bellapais Spring Music Festival; it goes hand in hand with the mimosa and wild fennel blooming. The programme, the North Cyprus Music Association with Halil Kalgay, the organizer of the festival, presented for this year’s festival, is full of musical treats, and so was the opening concert on the first two days April 11 and 12.
I attended the concert on the first evening and as I am an ‘early bird’ I had the chance to listen to the young pianist Emre Yavuz rehearsing Rachmaninoff through the open doors while the sky over the sea showed the palette of an early spring evening, from pink, purple, green and blue.
The hall of the beautiful concert hall filled to the last row with some visible excitement, and when H.E. Mustafa Akıncı and Meral, his wife, took their seats in the front rows of protocol together with other representatives and sponsors and other special guests, the many orchestra members came onto the stage, more than 40! I have attached the complete list.
For the special occasion, the orchestra was conducted by the well-known conductor Josef Suilen who came from Holland some days before the concert and thanks to Halil Kalgay, we could follow the days of rehearsal on the internet, he kept us informed.
For the first part of the concert, the piano was moved to the foreground for the young pianist Emre Yavuz from Izmir to perform Sergei Rachmaninoff’s Concerto No. 3 in D Minor, Op 30. It was overwhelming and the audience thanked him with standing ovations after the three movements. I have attached here the background story of the 3rd concerto, it is very interesting to read.
After the intermission, we were immersed into Antonin Dvorak’s Symphony No. 8 in G Major, Op. 88. The orchestra members now had more room as the piano was moved aside and we could see the guest conductor at work…. he was there with full body engagement, please read his CV and review, it describes him well. He was talking to the musicians with his hands and entire body, he became an instrument himself.
The programme for the length of four weeks is very interesting and diverse, please read the details on the attached poster, tickets can be obtained at the known places.