Published on May 31st, 2024


Portraits – May 11, 2024

Featuring Kristin Lee, violin

Symphony Tacoma’s final concert of the season “Portraits,” was a delightful and enriching experience. Under the adept direction of Music Director Sarah Ioannides, the evening showcased classical masterpieces, each performed with a nuanced touch that highlighted the distinct character and emotion of the works.

Walking into the historic Pantages Theater is always an awe-inspiring experience; Saturday, May 11th was no exception. Just as the audience was settling into the gorgeous theater, it was time to open the evening with Coleridge-Taylor’s Ballade in A minor. Its rich orchestral textures and lyrical beauty set a captivating tone for the evening. The musicians of Symphony Tacoma brought out the lush harmonies and sweeping melodies with precision and heartfelt expression, drawing the audience into the evocative soundscape crafted by Coleridge-Taylor.

Next on the program was Brahms’ Violin Concerto in D Major, featuring the virtuoso Kristin Lee. From the first notes, Lee’s performance was nothing short of mesmerizing. Her technical prowess and deep musicality brought Brahms’ intricate passages and soaring themes to life. The interplay between Lee and the orchestra was seamless, a dynamic conversation that ebbed and flowed with intensity and grace. The audience was left in awe, responding with a standing ovation that echoed the admiration felt throughout the theater.

After intermission, the evening concluded with Elgar’s Enigma Variations, a piece renowned for its emotional depth and intricate orchestration. Ioannides gave an in-depth explanation of Elgar’s poignant piece before leading the orchestra through each variation with keen insight, drawing out each section’s unique character and mood. The famous Nimrod variation was particularly moving, performed with a tenderness that filled the hall with a profound sense of reflection and serenity, leaving more than one audience member misty-eyed. The performance was a fitting end to the concert and season, leaving the audience with a lingering sense of wonder and appreciation for the evening’s musical journey.

As we have come to expect, Sarah and the musicians of Symphony Tacoma closed a phenomenal season with a masterfully curated performance. It was an evening that celebrated the power of music to paint vivid portraits of the human experience, leaving a lasting impression on all who were fortunate enough to be there.