A VERY healthy audience were privileged to hear a wonderful concert performed by the young members of the Sinfonia Cymru. 

Conducted by Gareth Jones, Haydn comprised the first half, with two works, Symphony no 85, (La Reine), followed by the Cello Concerto No. 2, with the soloist the 27 year old Michael Petrov, born in Bulgaria. 

The 24 members of the orchestra, just the right size for Haydn, gave a completely satisfying interpretation of this music from the 1780’s.

Almost like chamber music, with many passages for just one section or another, it held the audience spellbound.  

The interpretation of the concerto, especially the cadenzas, but also the understanding between the soloist and the orchestra, was superb.

After the interval, the first work was Béla Bartóks Divertimento for Strings. Completely different from the Haydn, this was a brilliant piece of programming, and held the audience spellbound.  

Still very modern sounding, despite being first performed in 1939, it had everything. Strong rhythms, lyrical passages, eerie sounds, (especially the semitone passages in the second movement), great vitality with the folk like motifs in the last movement.

The concert ended with Symphony No. 5 by Franz Schubert. Instantly recognisable, it is full of wonderful tunes such that only Schubert could have written. 

This orchestra has it all, and this work made a charming conclusion to the concert (to quote from the programme).

Paul Green