OWH Review: Omaha Symphony soars with Tchaikovsky, Chopin

A tree soaring stories into the air grows in silence, and in much the same way, some of the most towering tales can be told without a single word.

At the Holland Center on Friday night, the Omaha Symphony regaled an audience with a similarly epic assortment of fantastically speechless music under the direction of guest conductor Ankush Kumar Bahl in his Omaha debut.

The first set of the concert was a suite from Pyotr Ilyich Tchaikovsky’s first ballet, “Swan Lake.” Tchaikovsky had a unique gift for combining melodies and textures to portray a variety of characters. Among them, Alexandra Rock, principal oboe, was mystifying as “the swan.” Additionally, soloists Mary Bircher (principal harp), Susanna Perry Gilmore (concertmaster-violinist) and Paul Ledwon (cello) provided incredible color and emotion to an already stunning orchestral performance. The standing ovation was immediate.