Review: University Symphony Concert (FSU)

By Nicholas D. Lewis

I do not often write reviews about performances or musicians, but I attended a concert this evening that forces me to break the mold.  The Florida State University Symphony , lead by Alexander Jimenez, is comprised of the most passionate student musicians I have ever had the privilege of seeing.  This is an ensemble that rehearses almost every day, but always play in a way that makes me believe I am hearing the music for the first time.

Lawrence Quinnett performed the fiendishly difficult third piano concerto by Rachmaninov with technical wizardry that was only surpassed by sensitivity.  The way that Lawrence communicated with conductor, the orchestra,  and the audience made me feel involved with every sound.  This outstanding pianist combines all the different elements of music to create a convincing  and passionate performance.

I challenge all musicians to approach a piece of music as though they are seeing it for the first time.  Rehearsals are necessary, but these students prove that the work does not need to diminish inspiration and freshness.  I reject the belief that classical music dying, it is only passion and creativity that seems to be dying. The art is in the hand of young people now.  Take this as a challenge to have an open mind.