Browsing: Orchestral

Did you catch Herbert Blomstedt and Maria João Pires with the Berlin Philharmonic on Saturday? All it took was a smartphone, a subscription to the Berlin Philharmonic Digital Concert Hall and, optionally, a better-than-average pair of earbuds. I did it the old-fashioned way and do not regret the decision. Hearing one of the world’s most famous orchestras led by one of the world’s most venerable conductors in one of the world’s most illustrious concert halls added up to one of the best concert experiences imaginable. To risk another one-of qualification, the symphony on the program was one of my favorites,…

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Beyond the Score: Prokofiev Symphony No. 5  – Pure Propaganda? (A multimedia exploration) Prokofiev: Symphony No. 5 in B flat major Op. 100 (complete performance) Austin Symphony Orchestra/Peter Bay Long Center for the Performing Arts, Austin, TX, December 2, 2017   British composer, arranger, broadcaster, teacher and writer Gerard McBurney has developed quite a reputation for his music appreciation series “Beyond the Score,” which takes a single major work by a composer and provides a context for it drawing on letters, contemporaneous political events, excerpts from the work itself as well as from other works by the same composer. This “Beyond…

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Montreal’s second orchestra, Orchestre Métropolitain de Montréal, got positive press for their concert at the Elbe Philharmonic Hall (Elbphilharmonie) last Friday (December 1, 2017). Joachim Mischke, Hamburg’s leading and most knowledgeable music critic, wrote a comprehensive and inspiring review about the event (Hamburg Abendblatt, December 4). Conductor Yannick Nézet-Séguin was described as a bundle of energy who got the ball rolling in Pierre Mercure’s Kaléidoscope, demonstrating in detail the orchestra’s collective articulation accuracy. “Berlioz’s orchestral songs cycle Les nuits d’été became the finest moment, as the orchestra conjured nuances and played enchantingly discreet. But above all, contralto Marie-Nicole Lemieux savored…

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In 1998, Theodora Stathopoulos founded the Symphony Orchestra of Montreal’s FACE School (Fine Arts Core Education). The purpose was to train young musicians via newly-minted teachers, high-level amateurs and talented students. Stathopoulos is proud to see that twenty years of sustained effort have resulted in a string section (over 70 violins, violas, cellos and double basses) composed entirely of FACE students, some as young as ten. What’s more, this season’s concertmaster is only 13! That’s the youngest in the history of the orchestra, which when it started out only had a few FACE students among its players. The creation of…

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PARIS – Ever seen a conductor cry on stage? I mean, other than Leonard Bernstein? We can add to this exclusive list the name of Yannick Nézet-Séguin, who was seen wiping his eyes discreetly on Sunday after Elgar’s Enigma Variations, a performance that marked the official conclusion of a six-city, seven-concert European tour by the Orchestre Métropolitain. There would be an encore: Ravel’s Pavane pour une infante défunte, done in the supplest tones imaginable. We must resist the temptation to deem the last thing heard as the best. But goodness, what a sound. And what an ovation from the Parisians, who packed…

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HAMBURG – “Suche Karte.” Seeking ticket. This is always a good sign, quite literally, in German-speaking lands, where it is common to advertise your unhappy condition with two words writ large on a piece of cardboard. Sure enough, a visit to the box office of the Elbphilharmonie confirmed that the fifth installment  of the Orchestre Métropolitain’s tour of Europe was quite sold out. Eight thousand requests, 2,100 seats. Suche Karte. The huge demand cannot be reconciled with the usual explanations. Soloists Marie-Nicole Lemieux and Jean-Guihen Queyras are reputable enough, but hardly the stuff of a sellout. Yannick Nézet-Séguin is recognized everywhere.…

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Author : (Mathias Adamkiewicz)

Richard Strauss: Ein Heldenleben, Op. 40 Rodion Schedrin: Piano concerto # 2 Igor Stravinsky: Suite from “The Firebird” (1919) Rodion Schedrin: Humoresk for piano (encore) Giuseppe Verdi: La Forza del Destino overture, 1862 version of the Petersburg premiere (encore) Denis Matzuev, piano Mariinskyi Orchestra, Valery Gergiev, conductor Maison Symphonique de Montréal November 11, 2017 Valery Gergiev and his orchestra honored us with a visit at the Maison Symphonique on November 11 with a memorable concert of three pieces performed with variety and eclecticism. First came Stauss’s symphonic poem “A Hero’s Life,” with “elongated” tempi: because the maestro from Petersburg paid…

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Tania Miller and the Royal Conservatory Orchestra The first Canadian Maestra to become Music Director of a major symphony orchestra, Tania Miller takes the podium to lead the Royal Conservatory through a program that includes works by Prokofiev and Stravinsky. Prokofiev’s Piano Concerto no. 2 will be played by pianist Sae Yoon Chon. The Royal Conservatory Orchestra is comprised of members of the Glenn Gould School’s Performance Diploma and Artist Diploma programs. Nov. 24, Koerner Hall. www.rcmusic.ca Rodelinda with VOICEBOX: Opera In Concert One of Canada’s oldest opera companies continues it 2017-18 season at the Jane Mallett Theatre (St. Lawrence Centre…

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Leo Weiner: Five Divertimentos (Chandos) It was George Solti who first mentioned Weiner to me as his most sympathetic teacher in Budapest, an astute encourager of musical temperament. Solti returned to Weiner in what would be the last recording of his life, an affectionate account of the 1906 f-minor Serenade, perhaps Weiner’s trademark work though scarcely known beyond Hungarian borders. This new account by Neeme Järvi and the Estonian National Symphony Orchestra is strikingly fresh and virtuosic – just wallow in that sumptuous third-movement clarinet – less relaxed than Solti’s and altogether more together. The rhythms might sound a shade…

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World Premiere Recording of André Mathieu: Concerto No. 3 features JoAnn Falletta and the Buffalo Philharmonic Orchestra with Piano Soloist Alain Lefèvre Analekta CD Celebrates the 150th Anniversary of Canada and the 75th Anniversary of Mathieu’s Composition  A world premiere recording of André Mathieu: Concerto No. 3, theConcerto de Quebec, paired with George Gershwin’s An American in Paris is now available on Analekta Records featuring acclaimed conductor JoAnn Falletta leading the Buffalo Philharmonic Orchestra with soloist Alain Lefèvre.  The CD debuted as the No. 1 classical album in Canada. Says Falletta: “The pairing of the Mathieu and Gershwin on our Analekta CD celebrates the 150th anniversary of…

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