A Big Night for the Columbus Symphony

Congratulations to George Del Gobbo, who was honored Saturday evening with a proclamation by Columbus Mayor Teresa Tomlinson for his dedicated service in leading the Columbus Symphony Orchestra for twenty-five years.  The proclamation presented by City Manager Isaiah Hugley prior to the symphony’s  sensational concert.

The audience was blown away by the stunningly impressive performance  by 29-year-old violinist Tai Murray.  She played the extremely difficult and exciting Shostakovich Violin Concerto, Op. 99.  The standing  ovation that followed was loud and long. Not only was she in top form, the orchestra had never sounded better to me.

Columbus is truly fortunate to such a fine symphony orchestra, the second oldest in the country, founded in 1855. The New York Philharmonic was the first.  The CSO went dormant during the Civil War, and World War I and II, but was reborn in 1949 under the baton of Robert M. Barr. Harry Kruger followed Barr and Del Gobbo followed Kruger.

Not only does this year mark Del Gobbo’s 25th anniversary of leading the orchestra, it is also the tenth year of the RiverCenter for the Performing Arts. Delo Gobbo writes in this season’s program guide, “This remarkable building is certainly a treasured jewel in the crown of the city.” Indeed!

What was truly encouraging was the impressive number of young people attending the concert. They have to be exposed to the world’s most beautiful music in order for symphonic music to survive. To me, there is still nothing musically that matches the  sound of a live symphony orchestra.  Even with today’s marvelous recording technology, live still is best, especially in  a hall with the acoustics of the Bill Heard Theater.  Internationally acclaimed artists that perform there rave over the “beautiful hall with its remarkable accoustics.”

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