Articles in last week’s Columbus Dispatch presented the symphony board’s proposal to address recent budget deficits by cutting the number of full-time players and reducing the number of concerts. Such cuts will devastate central Ohio’s orchestra. Those who attended Saturday’s concert were treated with a heart-warming performance that shows what wonderful music is possible with this orchestra and musical director. The first selection, Vaughan William’s “Fantasia on a Theme by Thomas Tallis,” featured an unusual seating arrangement. It was easy to spot three basses on each side and the cellos were divided into three groups with the principal’s chair in its usual position but with some of the cellos at the end of the section of first violins while another group of cellos were situated behind the violas. What a romantic, soulful interpretation! The second selection, Erich Korngold’s Concerto in D Major for Violin and Orchestra, Op. 35, featured local concertmaster Charles Wetherbee who once again treated us to his virtuosity. How does he play those high notes so flawlessly and with such ebullience? Entertaining encore with one of the bass players, too. The second half of the concert featured Junichi Hirokami’s energetic rendition of Beethoven’s Symphony No. 7 in A Major, Op. 92. The woodwinds excelled in the third movement. Such a heart-warming concert made facing the cold temperatures a bit more bearable.

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