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September
St. Petersburg Philharmonic in three concerts October 24-26

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The oldest symphony orchestra in Russia, the St. Petersburg Philharmonic (formerly the Leningrad Philharmonic), has an exciting experience in store for Hong Kong audiences on October 24, 25 and 26.

Its three concerts will feature mainly core works from the Russian symphonic repertoire, conducted by Music Director and Chief Conductor Yuri Temirkanov, with piano soloist Vladimir Feltsman and cello soloist Natalia Gutman.

On October 24, the orchestra will perform Tchaikovsky's "Piano Concerto No.1 in B-flat Minor, Op.23" (with Feltsman) and Mussorgsky's "Pictures at an Exhibition".

The programme for October 25 consists of Mussorgsky's "Dawn on the Moscow River", Dvorak's "Cello Concerto in B Minor, B. 191" (with Gutman) and Rachmaninov's "Symphony No.2 in E Minor, Op.27".

On October 26, the orchestra performs Rachmaninov's "Piano Concerto No.3 in D Minor, Op.30" (with Feltsman) and Tchaikovsky's "Symphony No.4 in F Minor, Op.36".

The St. Petersburg Philharmonic Orchestra's history goes back to 1882, although it did not begin giving public concerts until the beginning of the 20th century.

It was Russia's first state orchestra and also the first to be granted the status of Academic and Honoured Orchestra of Russia. The famous musicians who have performed with it include Polina Viardo, Clara Schumann, Anton Rubinstein and Nikolai Rimsky-Korsakov.

The esteemed Yuri Temirkanov became Chief Conductor of the orchestra in 1988. He is a frequent guest of the world's finest symphonic ensembles, including the Boston Symphony, the Berlin Philharmonic and the Dresden Staatskapelle, and also conducts in the top international opera houses.

Vladmir Feltsman, considered one of the most imaginative and consistently interesting musicians of our time, is a regular guest soloist with the world's top orchestras. He also holds the Distinguished Chair of Professor of Piano at the State University of New York, New Paltz.

Natalia Gutman, described as "an incarnation of truthfulness in music", received her musical training from her grandfather, Anisim Berlin, and Professor Galina Kozolupova. Famous conductors Gutman has worked with include Wolfgang Sawallisch, Riccardo Muti and Claudio Abbado. She has also premiered works by many contemporary composers, among them Alfred Schnittke, who dedicated a sonata and his first "Cello Concerto" to her. Gutman has performed the complete Bach solo cello suites in Moscow, Berlin, Munich, Madrid, Barcelona and other cities.

Presented by the Leisure and Cultural Services Department, the concerts will be held at 8pm on October 24 and 25 (Friday and Saturday) at the Concert Hall, Hong Kong Cultural Centre; and October 26 (Sunday) at the Auditorium, Sha Tin Town Hall.

Tickets priced from $200 to $680 for the Hong Kong Cultural Centre and $150 to $500 for Sha Tin Town Hall are now available at all URBTIX outlets. Half-price concessions apply to senior citizens, people with disabilities, full-time students and Comprehensive Social Security Assistance recipients, while Friends of LCSD performing venues receive a 10% discount. There will also be group booking concessions: 10% discount for every purchase of four to nine tickets, 15% for 10 to 19 tickets and 20% for 20 tickets or more. Box seats and lounge packages are available for the performances. For details, call 2268 7231.

For programme enquiries, call 2268 7321 or visit www.lcsd.gov.hk/cp. Ticketing enquiries and reservations can be made on 2734 9009 and credit card telephone bookings on 2111 5999. Tickets can also be booked through the website, www.urbtix.gov.hk.

End/Tuesday, September 9, 2003

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