Friday’s concert by Lincoln’s Symphony Orchestra was outstanding.
Two war horses were on the playbill and would require great attention, because the audience of about 950 at the Lied Center for Performing Arts would be listening for mistakes.
Young Korean violinist BOMSORI Kim gave the Antonin Dvorák “Violin Concerto in A minor, Opus 53” a splendid rendering, and the orchestra tackled Brahms’ “Symphony No. 1 in C minor, Opus 68” after intermission.
Kim, young and ambitious, sought as much communication as she could with the orchestra and conductor Ed Polochick. The response was gratifying. A determined Kim brought on the fingering and the confidence to match the ensemble’s good preparation on the work.
Phrases came out like the warm spring air we’ve been missing. Perfection in runs and excellent pitching in the highest registers were world-class. As the final movement evoked its dance-like atmosphere, both Kim and conductor swayed to the music together, rendering exquisite music.
The cheering crowd brought smiles to faces onstage. Flowers came, matching the soloist’s lovely flowered dress. Dvorák had been played nearly perfect.
A long, detailed concerto can wear an orchestra down; what about the taxing Brahms symphony to come after intermission?
The orchestra took its cues from the excellent tympani march drum in the introduction to build good balance and blend. Brahms’ chordal structures came down with precision. For movement two, the oboe and clarinet passages were shimmery smooth and well played.
Horn solos in movements two and three were elegant statements from principal Gregory Helseth. The movements flowed smoothly. The final movement, which scholars compare to the final movement of Beethoven’s Ninth Symphony, was both heroic and intense.
Tumultuous applause and cheers came from standing patrons as it usually does for Lincoln’s Symphony concerts. This time it was really deserved.