John Christiansen in Jyllands-Posten (25/9 - 09):

...It is always quality that counts, here meaning that the musical statement has something essential to say. And that is the case with Bo Gunges concerto for piano and orchestra.

Naturally the piano is the instrument in fron of the others. Bo Gunge describes it as seducing the orchestra. It seduces us too, with its richness in power, sound and ideas. No wonder that the orchestra by the end of the 1. movement is captivated by the piano. The 2. movement is supple and full of ideas, while its main character is a mourning waltz, not a mourning march. The mourning waltz contributes to the inner duplicity in the music. The struggle is reborn in the 3. movement with the piano ending up, not as the hero, but returning to its dark beginning.

When has one last heard a new quality piece for symphonic orchestra and its soloist be saluted with so many curtain calls?

Ole Straarup in Århus Siftstidende (25/9 - 09):

The Piano Concerto, dedicated to the soloist of the evening, Ulrich Stærk, prsents in a way a Don Juan-story à la Strauss: The piano in the role of a både searching, seducing, devil-may-carish and resignating person, who in the end succumbs, maybe even dies. That set-up could be imagined in many different musical disguises, both as dialogue and duel. In this case the surpising element and – depending on taste – elevating or depressing is the composer’s choice of melodic language and style.

Bo Gunges concert has a multitude of great ideas and examples of his excellent instrumentation and secureness of form, but is, with its many references to the already heard, also strangely retrospective. Not post-modern, closer to post-romantic.

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