YGO marked the start of its 35th season by continuing its survey of Sibelius, coupling his Second Symphony with Mendelssohn’s Violin Concerto. They made a happy pairing, introduced by a Mendelssohn overture and a Sibelius tone poem.

The strings had clearly summered well. They were pleasingly nimble in the overture to A Midsummer Night’s Dream, where the winds rang up the curtain with matching precision. Jane Wright took the title role in The Swan of Tuonela, the second of Sibelius’s Four Legends, her elegant cor anglais gliding across the waters with mystical serenity.

So-Ock Kim is not your typical violin virtuoso. She has all the ammunition, but she spurns fireworks for their own sake. So her account of the concerto was off the beaten track – and all the more refreshing for that. Typical was her thoughtful cadenza, paving the way for the lovely rubato with which she tinted her intimate slow movement.

She took in her stride what seemed to be an over-frisky start to the closing rondo, even finding something extra in her locker for a dazzling coda. Wright kept his accompaniment light; it allowed Kim’s intelligent interaction full rein throughout.

The symphony reflects Sibelius’s early nationalism. There was early defiance in the chattering woodwinds. The Andante had plenty of menace, too. In a lightning scherzo, and in the tension-filled finale, the strings were superb. They will miss their principal second violin, Isobel Sidebottom, who retires after 20 years’ sterling service.