Michel Dalberto and the Hong Kong Sinfonietta HK City Hall Concert Hall Reviewed: May 15 Julian Yu's adaptation of Mussorgsky's Pictures at an Exhibition for chamber orchestra brought this Le French May event to an unpredictably colourful close. The work isn't strictly an arrangement, but a free extension that has you knitting your eyebrows and wearing a wide grin at the same time. 'Made in China' was stamped on it, with irreverent Chinese folk song muscling into the solo viola's opening Promenade, while the final coda had tubular bells wrapping up the experience. In between, overlapping harmonies and the extensive use of vibraphone produced flashbacks of Mantovani strings and the early BBC radiophonic workshop, but the piece wasn't short of originality: Yu made The Old Castle teem with echoing corridors, while some funky marimba counterpoint etched The Great Gate of Kiev with the graffiti that adorns most monuments. Faure's Ballade Op 19 for piano and orchestra is loosely constructed and needs to be compensated by a ravishing sound and rhapsodic edge, neither of which was apparent in soloist Michel Dalberto's playing. C???sar Franck's Symphonic Variations for piano and orchestra sounded bound by the metronome, and the spring of the opening rhythms was lost, setting a laboured course that was never rectified. Despite some imprecision from the oboes, conductor Yip Wing-sie elicited impressively responsive playing from the orchestra in Ravel's Le Tombeau de Couperin.