National Youth Orchestra of Ireland at The Helix

National Youth Orchestra of IrelandWhat better way is there than to spend the first official Bank Holiday of the year, listening to the National Youth Orchestra of Ireland? None. Being in The Helix for this made me realize two things, I don’t listen to enough classical music and these young musicians are the biz, they are quite literally staggeringly talented.

The sheer magic at the beginning of an orchestra recital always gets me. The members tune up their instruments and we hear all the squeaks. Seconds later on the Conductor’s order, they combine for the sweetest of sounds.

THe young musician’s recited Mozart’s La Clemenza di Tito before they were joined by Cello maestro Brian O’Kane for Bruch’s Kol Nidrei. Amazingly good and modernizing the image of Classical music, Mr O’Kane looks like he could step right into any rock band.

I have to mention the Conductor, Gearóid Grant, if you never even thought of listening to classical or orchestral music before, then go do it when his man is conducting. He conducts with such gusto and enthusiasm that you really cannot help enjoy yourself just watching him.

THe highlight though had to be Mussorgsky’s ‘Pictures at an Exhibition’. This was originally composed to follow an imaginary tour of an art exhibition, so with that in mind, The NYOI and The National Gallery of Ireland got together and children from Cherry Orchard Performing Arts Club had their drawings displayed on a big screen behind the orchestra as they played the music.

Brilliant stuff, a lovely way to showcase the work of some of Ireland’s talented youngsters. Really nice afternoon and a lovely way to start the new year.