Cullagh sings for society’s 80th season
Music lovers are in for a treat when Cork Orchestral Society opens its 80th season with a gala concert featuring internationally acclaimed soprano, Majella Cullagh.
She will appear with Denise Crowley and Gabriela Mayer (pianos), David Whitla (double bass), and Viv Johnston (trumpet and piccolo trumpet) for the gala concert on September 27 at the Cork School of Music.
Founded by Aloys Fleischmann in 1938, Cork Orchestral Society has spent 80 years continuing his legacy by providing some of the finest live performances to ever take place on Leeside.
The opening gala concert promises to be a special treat for both seasoned concertgoers and newcomers.
One of the main features of the programme is an aria from Rossini’s Adelaide di Borgogna. Ms Cullagh sang the role of Adelaide in the premiere of the opera in Usher Hall, Edinburgh, in 2005, when her performance was praised by The
Guardian as “the combination of thrilling abandon, perfect control and dramatic exactitude”.
Cullagh will also feature in songs for soprano and piano by Reynaldo Hahn, virtuosic composer of the so-called melodies, French art songs, often based on romantic poetry of the late 19th and early 20th century. The evening will also feature a series of poems by Katherine Gekker, set to music by US composer Eric Ewazen.
The gala programme includes modern instrumental pieces: Samuel Barber’s Souvenirs, suite for piano four hands; Kadenza by Teppo Hauta-Aho, one of the most prominent jazz and classical double bassists in Finland; and Croquis, sketches for bass and piano by French pianist Serge Lancen.
“I’m very excited to work with the other soloists on ensemble pieces for double bass and trumpet. I’ve chosen some Reynaldo Hahn songs for my programme as they are gorgeous pieces and I’ve always wanted to sing them. I’ve added an extravagant Rossini aria from Adelaide di Borgogna to finish with a flourish,” said Ms Cullagh.
The 80th season of Cork Orchestral Society has many more gems in store. Among the season’s highlights is a piano recital by Hugh Tinney on November 1, featuring timeless masterpieces by Beethoven, Chopin, and Schubert, as well as modern compositions by Ian Wilson and Thomas Adès.
On November 16, the Irish Chamber Orchestra will make a much anticipated return to Cork to perform Puccini, Stamitz, and Tchaikovsky under the baton of their principal conductor, Jörg Widmann.
Majella Cullagh: Set for gala concert outing.