The duo began the programme with Poulenc’s all-time favourite Sonata for Flute and Piano, a commissioned piece by the Coolidge Foundation in 1956 to honour the memory of Elizabeth Sprague Coolidge. Composed in Poulenc’s last years, this chamber work revealed the melancholy and valedictory nature. It was then followed by a lovely gem for flute – Barber’s Canzone. The programme concluded with Respighi’s sonata for violin and piano, transcribed for the flute and the piano, a highly energetic and engaging piece that was rarely performed in Hong Kong. Both performers brought to the audience a new experience of sound compared to the violin version. Interested readers can revisit this concert via the Tom Lee Live YouTube channel.
Over 180 children, selected from the members of the Hong Kong Children’s Symphony Orchestra, joined by the Hong Kong Sinfonietta, presented the world premiere of the opera Alice in Wonderland by the Italian composer Pierangelo Valtinoni. The nearly sold-out performance’s preparation spanned more than two years and three months of intense rehearsal. An excited audience, some as young as three years old, were captivated not only by the music and performance but also the various fascinating decorations and visual effects on stage – led into the wonderful world based on Lewis Carroll’s classic.