"The Lark Ascending" is a brilliantly beautiful romance for violin and orchestra. The violin soloist was David Coucheron concertmaster of the ASO. Coucheron has a big, big tone more suited to being a soloist with an orchestra than, say, a first violin in a string quartet. He at times seems to lack a certain subtlety. He is technically strong an will likely grow into a bit more sensitivity. He is a large presence on stage and it appears that the American diet agrees with him. This was a fine performance, with the ASO's playing nearly flawless.
The Symphony No. 4 has a edge that is not seen in the melodies of Vaughn Williams more popular works. It is aggressive without being strident. It is late romantic without failing to register the time in which it was written (1936). In the third movement there is a theme that seemed to have been borrowed by Jerry Goldsmith in the theme for "Star Trek Next Generation." This was another great ASO performance.
Thank goodness for antibiotics.