Imagine sitting in a room with an orchestra performing a Mozart masterpiece. You can catch every nuance of tone, texture, dynamics and articulation in the musicians’ playing. You can hear and see the musicians in full colour.
Now adjust the picture.
Everyone is in a different location, seeing and hearing each other on a video-conferencing platform. The sound is filtered and transmitted through an electronic device.
Now you understand one of the biggest challenges facing the Sooke Philharmonic Orchestra after the COVID-19 pandemic forced performances to go online.
“So much of playing beautifully together is about listening to each other,” Yariv Aloni, the SPO conductor, said.
“Physically distanced playing challenges our musicians in new ways; we have to listen more carefully, pay more attention, feel the music together. Our ensembles have risen to the challenge and advanced their playing.”
The Sooke Philharmonic Orchestra will release a new virtual concert on its website on Nov. 1 at 7:30 p.m.
Ode to Autumn will feature four small ensembles that have been rehearsing separately following physical distancing protocols.
The repertoire includes Serenade for Strings and Elegy, Op. 58 — Elgar; Irish Melody — Frank Bridge; English Folk Song Suite and Charterhouse Suite — Vaughan Williams; and Trois Pièces for Woodwind Quartet — Eugene Bozza.
The autumn concert will be recorded by the SPO live at Sooke’s Holy Trinity Church on Halloween. The video will then be made available to the public on sookephil.ca.
The concert is the second virtual release of the SPO; the first was in early October, the inaugural performance of the Voces Intimae string quartet, which features Aloni on viola. The video of that performance is also available at sookephil.ca.