The Irish Times - Friday - The Ticket - - CRITICS’ CHOICE -

MICHAEL DERVAN Wed­nes­day 15

RTÉ Con­cert Orches­tra/Francesco Cil­luffo Na­tional Con­cert Hall, Dublin

Ital­ian con­duc­tor Francesco Cil­luffo, re­cently ap­pointed prin­ci­pal guest con­duc­tor of Wex­ford Fes­ti­val Opera, has picked some at­trac­tive, low-ly­ing fruit for his first con­cert with the RTÉ Con­cert Orches­tra. It’s an al­lRus­sian evening, open­ing with the fizz of Glinka’s Rus­s­lan and Lud­milla Over­ture, and fol­low­ing with two of Prokofiev’s most de­lec­ta­ble works, the suite from Alek­sandr Faintsim­mer’s 1934 comic film, Lieu­tenant Kijé, and end­ing with selec­tions from the bal­let Romeo and Juliet, which dates from the fol­low­ing year.

Fri­day 17

Mid­win­ter Fes­ti­val: Beethoven Gal­way, Town Hall The­atre, un­til Sun­day

The 2020 cel­e­bra­tions of Gal­way as Euro­pean Cap­i­tal of Cul­ture don’t of­fi­cially get underway un­til Fe­bru­ary. Even the lone sheep from the im­age on Gal­way 2020’s home web­page knows that the year starts in January. Mu­sic for Gal­way cer­tainly does and there’s a three-day, Beethoven-themed Mid­win­ter Fes­ti­val to prove it. Fri­day has string quar­tets and the Septet from the ConTempo Quar­tet and friends. Satur­day brings French pi­anist Cé­dric Tiberghien in solo piano works and the Piano and Wind Quin­tet. And Sun­day af­ter­noon has Tiberghien team­ing up with Rus­sian vi­o­lin­ist for vi­o­lin sonatas and vari­a­tions. Ev­ery­thing is from the com­poser’s early pe­riod, the ear­li­est work (Vari­a­tions on Se vuol bal­lare) com­pleted when he was 22, the lat­est (the Kreutzer Sonata) when he was 32. There are free talks by Richard Wig­more on Fri­day af­ter­noon and Satur­day evening.

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