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Concert tour to the Garda Lake

BRAVI, BRAVI!

The idea of going on a concert tour to Italy was – how could it be otherwise – born over a few glasses of wine in the evening. In October 2016 this idea was realised and members of Collegium Musicum set off in the early hours of the morning by coach from Hannover heading South. The coach arrived at its destination Riva on the northern bank of Lake Garda – steered by a wonderful, funny bus driver who had nerves of steel.

The planned concert programme with tangos and film music we had previously practised in Hannover and there – in the course of a weekend rehearsal already performed once in Sofa-Loft with both professional soloists Massimo Turrini (violin) and Emanuela Facinoli (piano). This weekend had already given us a glimpse of what to expect in Italy …

Full of vim and vigour we played our first concert on the very first day after our arrival at a tango festival in the wonderful casino in Arco. This was an extraordinary experience as tango Argentino dancers demonstrated their skills to our music, which fitted perfectly to the unique atmosphere of this location and fascinated everybody. Immediately after the concert we headed to the south western bank of Lake Garda where we were to spend the rest of our stay in Pratello,an accommodation with Medieterranean flair and corresponding vineyard.

Our second concert took place a few days later in thea sold out old Teatro Sociale in Castiglione delle Stiviere. In our view it was a particularly “Italian concert”. For the planned rehearsal we arrived to find a stage without any chairs,but all the more “important” marshals were present. We waited for our concert performance to begin, first amused, as time went by even less chuffed,   for almost half an hour behind a heavy satin curtain. After the concert we were rewarded for our performance with thunderous applause and loud shouts of “Bravi, bravi!”.

We gave our last concert on this concert tour on an idyllic vineyard, Villa Pasini in Puegnago. There, as thecompère of the event told us, the older ladies took a shine to our conductor in particular. The compère was incidentally visibly relieved the better he was able to pronounce the surname of our “Maestro Sönke Grohmann” during the course of the evening. Also after this concert we were loudly applauded by the audience and appreciated with shouts of “Bravi, bravi!”. Our fee, a delicious Italian buffet including prosecco, red wine, sambuca and lots of espressi during the interval put us in a merry mood so that we played the Dvorak symphony in the second half of the concert with particular and unsurpassed ease.

We experienced an awful lot between these wonderful concerts!

Great trips to Venedig, Cremona (including the Museo del Violino with a live concert in the auditorium on a Stradivari violin, the “Clisbee” dating from 1669), Sirmione, Desenzano, Verona. Not to mention the Italian sunshine, temperatures suitable for bathing, boat trips, splendid panoramas, fun evenings with good Italian wine, lots and lots of espressi, good-tasting authentic Italian food and a very special Piano Bar. A particular experience was also to harvest olives on our own – we were allowed to put this to the test in Manuel`s sister`s garden, who we would like to thank for organising everything perfectly there in Italy.

A constant companion on our trip was Italian spontaneity which we almost began to cherish over time – from which – together with the wonderful experiences – a completely new dynamic was created in the orchestra. Consequently, no doubt all of these impressions will remain in our memories for a very long time. Hopefully we will be able to return to these wonderful places soon. To our great delight we have already been kindly invited!

Che sarà