tue 28/03/2017

LSO

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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The Hogboon, LSO, Rattle, Barbican

The spirit of the late Peter Maxwell Davies blazed in the Barbican Hall last night. Dear God, we’ve never needed his humane, inclusive vision more than now. It’s a measure of the man that his final work, The Hogboon, should fill a stage with...

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Znaider, LSO, Pappano, Barbican

Anger and fear in Elgar, introspection in middle-period Beethoven: these are undervalued qualities in each composer’s music. Yet such moods were vividly present in two hyper-nuanced interpretations last night. It was easy to believe that no other...

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Andsnes, LSO, Flor, Barbican

Laid low by a bug, Daniel Harding had to withdraw at the last minute from conducting the LSO last night. Booked as the soloist, Leif Ove Andsnes stepped into the breach to lead Mozart’s Piano Concerto No 20 from the piano, as the composer would have...

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Bruckner 8, LSO, Rattle, Barbican

Last and most imposing of Bruckner’s completed symphonies, the Eighth invites and frequently receives architectural comparisons. Such talk of pillars and cathedrals could only be wide of the mark in the wake of this unconventional, beautifully...

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Scenes from Faust, LSO, Harding, Barbican

Some of us have waited years for this. The opportunity to see Schumann’s largest, most ambitious work was not to be missed. For this most literary of composers, setting the Alpha and Omega of German poetry was a labour of love, which he undertook in...

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