I had two strikingly different interactions with WASO this week. Attending Leon and the Place Betweenwith my son’s school, we heard that exuberant piece by Paul Rissman as well as fabulous offerings by Samuel Taylor-Coleridge and Elena Kats-Chernin, with accomplished conductor Jen Winleyand a WASO in blistering form. This concert was markedly different territory. I couldn’t help feeling it was a shame to hear a program as diverse and thoughtful as the education program, and another for the general public featuring such a conservative all-European-male composer line-up. I believe at the very least that most of the patrons in last night’s concert are capable of being delighted by both incarnations of WASO, with one showing a much more thoughtful attempt at diversity in programming.

Nevertheless, however well I feel I may know a piece, a live performance is still a continual process of re-creation and on this score, I will not be one to quibble. This was playing of the highest calibre, and Asher Fisch – barring an odd and arguably unnecessary decision to lead the Haydn Sinfonia Concertante from the harpsichord – was in particularly fine form.

Asher Fisch...