tue 12/12/2017

Strauss

Tetzlaff, Gewandhausorchester Leipzig, Chailly, Barbican

In practice as well as in prospect, the second in Riccardo Chailly’s Strauss/Mozart trilogy was a concert of two very different halves. The first offered small Bavarian and Austrian beer in the shape of Strauss’s fustian Macbeth, unbelievably close...

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Pires, Gewandhausorchester Leipzig, Chailly, Barbican

Riccardo Chailly’s Strauss odyssey with his Leipzig orchestra peaked in Saxony last year, the 150th anniversary of the composer’s birth. I was lucky to catch a razor-sharp Till Eulenspiegel and a saturated Death and Transfiguration in Dresden’s...

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Johnston, RLPO, Petrenko, Philharmonic Hall, Liverpool

If you’re going to employ tens of extra musicians for Strauss’s gigantic Alpine Symphony, it’s probably just as well that a few other "biggies" are programmed in the same concert. So it was at the Philharmonic Hall, where the Strauss shared the...

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Salome, Bournemouth SO, Karabits, Symphony Hall, Birmingham

“How fair is the Princess Salome tonight”! That slithering clarinet run, that glint of moonlight: few operas create their world so instantly and so intoxicatingly. At Symphony Hall, the lights rose on the very back row of the stage, the percussion...

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Last Night of the Proms, BBCSO, Alsop

“A rich and eclectic sequence of works” was the promise made in this evening’s concert programme. It certainly was that, with the Last Night festivities taking in new and old, well-known and obscure, plus a handful of celebrity soloists for good...

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theartsdesk in Pärnu: Top players, great Estonians

In 1989 Neeme Järvi, already rated one of the world’s top conductors and soon to be voted “Estonian of the Century” by his compatriots, returned with his Gothenburg Symphony Orchestra to the homeland he had left for America nearly a decade earlier....

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Intermezzo, Garsington Opera

In a curious deal, two operatic card games were running almost simultaneously last night. At the London Coliseum, Tchaikovsky’s outsider Hermann was gambling for his life on three hands of Faro in The Queen of Spades, while in home counties...

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Hannigan, Britten Sinfonia, WRCH Cambridge

“Songs of Vienna” by the Britten Sinfonia turned out to be a concert of chamber works, with never more than six performers on the stage at any time. It was built around two appearances by the Canadian soprano Barbara Hannigan, who ...

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DiDonato, NYPO, Gilbert, Barbican

Visits by the New York Philharmonic Orchestra are always an adrenaline boost for musical life in London, and yesterday evening was no exception. The first concert in their brief residency took in Finnish, French and German music (plus one Russian...

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Classical CDs Weekly: Strauss, Aurora Orchestra, Valerie Tryon

 Dohnányi: Variations on a Nursery Song, Rachmaninov: Piano Concerto no 1, Strauss: Burleske Valerie Tryon (piano), Royal Philharmonic Orchestra/Jac van Steen (Somm)This entertaining, well-filled disc collects three works which, if they were...

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Best of 2014: Opera

When everything works – conducting, singing, production, costumes, sets, lighting, choreography where relevant – then there’s nothing like the art of opera. But how often does that happen? In my experience, very seldom, but not this year. It's been...

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Karajan's Magic and Myth, BBC Four

There have been legendary conductors, and then there was Herbert von Karajan. He was a colossus of post-World War Two classical music, equipped with fearsome technical mastery allied to a vaguely supernatural gift for extracting exquisite sounds...

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