Concert on March 31
On March 31st, the Eighth Mstislav Rostropovich International Festival continued in St. Petersburg, where Alisa Weilerstein and the National Symphony Orchestra under Christoph Eschenbach performed at the Grand Hall of the Philharmonia. The NSO last came here in February 1990, giving two concerts under the baton of Mstislav Rostropovich. After 27 years, Festival's Artistic Director Olga Rostropovich organized a special concert in St. Petersburg to celebrate the memory of the first NSO's tour in Russia, when the Maestro also brought the orchestra first to Moscow and then to the northern capital of Russia, St. Petersburg.
The great public acclaim that musicians received in Moscow repeated in St. Petersburg, where for the third evening in a row the audience gave standing ovations to the orchestra, which still features musicians who started their careers under Mstislav Rostropovich. As the local public admitted, the major orchestras like this are not frequent visitors in St. Petersburg, therefore the auditorium was completely sold out and the audience filled in every single aisle. Alisa Weilerstein brilliantly performed one of the most appreciated works of the cello repertoire, Elgar's concert; the second part of the concert boasted a powerful and dramatic rendition of Shostakovich's Eighth Symphony, which the NSO performed also in 1990 under Mstislav Rostropovich.
For the rest of the concerts the Festival is coming back to Moscow: on 2nd April the Grand Hall of the Moscow Conservatoire will host Maxim Vengerov performing the complete Brahms' Violin Sonatas with pianist Polina Osetinskaya,