THE Yorkshire Young Sinfonia performed their inaugural concert at York Barbican last Saturday night, after a week of intense rehearsals and tutoring.

The group of more than 30 young musicians hit the ground running with an exciting rendition of Mendelssohn’s Hebrides Overture, before being joined by soloist Simon Callaghan in Mozart’s Piano Concerto No. 20 in D minor.

The players moved between sensitive accompanists and forceful soloists, and it was excellent to see this young orchestra put through their paces in the nuanced genre of the concerto. Callaghan’s performed with a light touch and delivered a particularly arresting cadenza.

Britten’s Fanfare For St Edmundsbury saw three brave trumpet players open the second half with panache; the range of repertoire that followed showed the scope of the musicians’ ability.

Alannah Marie Halay’s new commission, Air, Earth, Fire, Water, featured an array of extended instrumental techniques that conjured some extreme sounds from the orchestra, but conductor Tom Hammond carefully guided the young players towards sections of almost Romantic melody.

In Sibelius’s Scenes With Cranes, the high string passages were superbly controlled, while the woodwinds and percussion shone in Matthew Taylor’s The Needles.

The second movement of Beethoven’s Symphony No. 7 was taken at a lively pace, every section playing a crucial role in this difficult music, before the rambunctious Brahms Hungarian Dance No. 1 finished proceedings to rapturous applause.

This was an excellent concert and an impressive start for Yorkshire Young Sinfonia: let’s hope they continue and grow in years to come.