Sunday’s performance by the Symphony Orchestra of India was an ear-opener — for the audience and the musicians alike — with a whopping 3,000 people turning up at Cross Maidan.
The concert, part of the Pepe Jeans Music Section of the HT Kala Ghoda Arts Festival, lived up to the theme of Resonance, with a rousing performance of the national anthem performed by musicians from 26 countries, followed by a series of compositions by Brahms, Glinka and Bizet as well as more popular scores from musicals such as My Fair Lady, The Magnificent Seven and Sound of Music.
A total of 70 musicians playing as many instruments was led by SOI’s resident conductor Zane Dalal.
Charming the audience at the beginning of the event, Dalal introduced the orchestra in English, Hindi and Marathi, prompting a burst of applause and laughter. “This season, the audience has responded particularly well. I welcomed everyone in the three languages to tell everyone that even if they had never seen an orchestra or were not sure of what it was, the music is for everyone,” Dalal said.
Among the audience were music lovers Ralph Pinto, 44, a sales development professional, and cake designer Joanna Baptista Pinto, 47, both of whom had travelled from Andheri to hear the orchestra perform. “We love classical music and such concerts usually cost thousands of rupees per ticket,” said Pinto. “Free events such as this will have the youth enjoying music too.”
Still recovering from the overwhelming response, SOI music director Marat Bisengaliev had the last word. “I was pleasantly surprised by the success of today’s performance,” he said.