mon 21/08/2017

LSO

Prom 46 review: Gurrelieder, LSO, Rattle - gorgeous colours, halting movement in Schoenberg's monsterpiece

From sunset to sunrise, across aeons of time, usually flashes by in Schoenberg's polystylistic epic. Not last night at the Proms: Simon Rattle is too much in love with the sounds he can get from the London Symphony Orchestra - here verging on a...

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Kozhukhin, LSO, Rattle, Barbican

Gorgeous sound, shame about the movement – or lack of it. That seems to be the problem with too many of Simon Rattle's interpretations of late romantic music. It gave us a sclerotic Wagner Tristan und Isolde Prelude last night, Karajanesque and not...

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LSO, Haitink, Barbican

Bernard Haitink is one of the great Bruckner conductors of our time. His interpretations are expansive yet vivid and always go straight to the heart of the music. But he is also an old man, and physical frailty is increasingly inhibiting his work,...

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Tamestit, LSO, Roth, Barbican

François-Xavier Roth is a distinctive presence at the podium. He is short and immaculately attired, and first appearances could lead you to expect a civilised and uneventful evening. But the facade soon drops. His movements are brisk and erratic, as...

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Trpčeski, LSO, Roth, Barbican

In musical performance, if you get the start right and the end right, you can get away with a lot in between. In last night’s LSO concert under François-Xavier Roth there was a mixed bag of more and less successful beginnings and endings, but lots...

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Kaufmann, Mattila, LSO, Pappano, Barbican

Jonas Kaufmann’s legion of admirers could rest content. A well-received Lieder evening last week demonstrated that the world’s hottest tenor property had returned, both to London for a three-concert residency at the Barbican, and indeed to singing...

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LSO, Rattle, Barbican

Symphony is a word carrying heavy historical baggage. It’s understandable when composers dig for inspiration elsewhere. All the same, Mark-Anthony Turnage has grasped the symphonic nettle with Remembering – In memoriam Evan Scofield which received...

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Le Grand Macabre, LSO, Rattle, Barbican

The Big Mac – as in Ligeti's music-theatre fantasia on the possible death of Death – is here to stay. Back in 1990, three critics (I was one) were invited on to the BBC World Service to say which work from the previous decade we thought...

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Josefowicz, LSO, Adams, Barbican

Praise be to the spell cast by top players on great composers. Without the phenomenon that is Leila Josefowicz, John Adams would never have created his often prolix, fitfully hair-raising Scheherazade.2, more "dramatic symphony" for violin and...

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El Niño, LSO, Adams, Barbican

Second and third times lucky: after the migraine-inducing multimedia overload of Peter Sellars's premiere production of El Niño, first seen in London in 2003 and subsequently excoriated in eloquent prose by the composer himself, John Adams's layered...

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Douglas, LSO, Søndergård, Barbican

Thomas Søndergård stood in for this concert at a day’s notice – Valery Gergiev is apparently recovering from a knee operation and unable to travel. He left behind a curious programme, centred around Prokofiev’s quirky but dour Sixth Symphony. It’s a...

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10 Questions for Conductor Sir John Eliot Gardiner

The Lobgesang "lies very near my heart," wrote Mendelssohn. And the composer was so self-critical that the published order of his symphonies bears no resemblance to their composition: this "Hymn of Praise", known as the Second, was the penultimate...

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