thu 18/08/2022

Philharmonia Orchestra, Pletnev, Royal Festival Hall | reviews, news & interviews

Philharmonia Orchestra, Pletnev, Royal Festival Hall

Philharmonia Orchestra, Pletnev, Royal Festival Hall

Pletnev's circumspect Rachmaninov

Mikhail Pletnev: a cool customer
Shostakovich’s Festive Overture marked the 30th anniversary of the 1917 Revolution with earnest fanfares and jolly tunes. 62 years on it smacks more of “Looney Tunes” and a cheesy kind of newsreel patriotism and you can’t help wondering if, behind all the laughter and frenetic flag-waving, the disillusionment had already set in. Mikhail Pletnev’s face suggested it had.
Shostakovich’s Festive Overture marked the 30th anniversary of the 1917 Revolution with earnest fanfares and jolly tunes. 62 years on it smacks more of “Looney Tunes” and a cheesy kind of newsreel patriotism and you can’t help wondering if, behind all the laughter and frenetic flag-waving, the disillusionment had already set in. Mikhail Pletnev’s face suggested it had.

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Having visited the concert myself I'm quite surprised by mr. Seckerson's view. It is of course easy to suggest that "The Philharmonia were impressive, the conducting was not", but nearly every intelligent orchestral player will tell you - this is not more than illusion. It's all in conductor's hands. "One was inwardly urging Pletnev to let the music go." Well, mr. Seckerson, I wish you wooud not speak for the audience. I'm glad, that the audience (with their ovation), as well as Evening Standard's review agree - this was a very very impressive Rachmaninov.

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