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London Symphony Orchestra/Sir Simon Rattle

The Sound of Fury

Sir Simon Rattle conducting

Shocking, dissonant, savagely ironic: Shostakovich’s Fourth was a statement of rebellion against Joseph Stalin’s dictatorship.

It begins with the engines of industry: mechanical marches, pounding brass. An uneasy second movement, and then a nightmarish vision of life in Stalin’s Russia explodes in a frenzied succession of dance themes. 

Shostakovich withdrew his Fourth Symphony before its first performance, after hints that he was treading a fine line with the Soviet authorities. It shines on as an extraordinary vision of thwarted humanity.

Brahms wrote his Violin Concerto with, and for, his friend, the virtuosic Hungarian musician Joseph Joachim, and its foot-stomping finale honours Joachim’s heritage.

Isabelle Faust has made an exhaustive study of Joseph Joachim’s approach to this concerto, so her stirring performance is reliably authentic. There are thrills and chills aplenty in Sir Simon Rattle and the LSO’s uncompromising approach to Shostakovich’s masterpiece.

This performance will end at approximately 9.30pm, including a 20-minute interval.

Produced by the London Symphony Orchestra

Concert generously supported by The Huo Family Foundation