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January 2014

Boyce's Solomon at PBO

Van_doren* Notes * 
Philharmonia Baroque Orchestra continued its 2013-2014 season with a set of performances entitled "Solomon in London." The San Francisco performance was again held at the SFJAZZ Center as Herbst Theatre undergoes a retrofit. The new venue lends the orchestra a more incisive sound, but Nicholas McGegan still gets his musicians to play with cheer and bounciness.

The concert started with William Croft's Burial Service, and McGegan dedicated this piece to Nelson Mandela, rather than Stanley's Concerto for Strings in B Minor, Op. 2, No. 2, which came later in the evening.

The main attraction of the concert was William Boyce's Solomon. The piece certainly has some amusing lines, and PBO played with vim. Soprano Yulia Van Doren (pictured above) and tenor Thomas Cooley seemed to have fun singing together. They clearly listened to each other. Van Doren sounded strong but had a bird-like quality as well. Cooley's high notes ring out but his lower ones do get a bit lost.

* Tattling * 
I was scolded for refused to take a disposable plastic bag for my umbrella and had to explain that the umbrella was going into my backpack straightaway, as I am, at the moment, the last person who wants to slip and fall.