mon 20/05/2024

Beethoven

Classical CDs: Microphones, Massachusetts and mountains

 Antal Doráti: The Mercury Masters – The Mono Recordings (Decca Eloquence)The great Hungarian conductor Antal Doráti (1906-1988) enjoyed a long and prolific recording career, stretching from the mid-1940s to the early 1980s. This beautifully...

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Classical CDs: Penitence, pipe smoking and soot sprites

 Otto Klemperer: The Warner Classics Remastered Edition (Warner Classics)The young Otto Klemperer’s conducting career was encouraged by no less than Gustav Mahler, Klemperer’s meteoric rise leading him to become director of Berlin’s Kroll Opera...

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Prom 14: Lisiecki, BBCSO, Chan - fine textures and subtle delights

One of the undoubted highlights of Prom 14 was unprogrammed – following his commanding performance of Beethoven’s third piano concerto, Jan Lisiecki returned to the stage to give an encore of Chopin’s Nocturne in E Flat, Opus 9 No 2.There was a rapt...

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Prom 7: Urioste, BBC National Orchestra of Wales, Otaka review – old friends, new worlds

A full house, and television cameras: rarer events at the Proms than they used to be (or should be). Both lent a sense of occasion to the BBC National Orchestra of Wales’s visit to the Royal Albert Hall with their Conductor Laureate, Tadaaki Otaka....

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Benedetti, Kanneh-Mason, Grosvenor, RSNO, Søndergård, Usher Hall, Edinburgh review - gorgeous textures, starry soloists

What’s better than having a star soloist on the billing for a concert? Three star soloists! The Royal Scottish National Orchestra billed this concert as its “All Star Gala”, and that’s more than just a shrewd marketing move (though it was that: this...

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Grosvenor, Kanneh-Mason, Park, Hallé, Stasevska, Bridgewater Hall, Manchester review - the factors that make for a full house

What makes a classical box office draw these days? If there were a simple answer to that question, a lot of concert givers would be laughing all the way to the bank.Is it recognisability – artists whose names are familiar from big-viewing TV events...

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Classical CDs: Symphonies, suppers and knitting needles

 Roger Norrington: The Complete Erato Recordings (Erato)Richard Osborne’s booklet essay contains some telling words from Sir Roger Norrington, tucked away at the end of the final paragraph: “I don’t mind if a performance is unhistorical; I do...

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Mithras Trio, Wigmore Hall review - exhilarating, highly-toned performance

The adrenalin was in full flow yesterday lunchtime at the Wigmore Hall as the dynamic young Mithras Trio delivered a vigorous, toned performance featuring Beethoven, Bridge and an electrifying new work by Joy Lisney. The trio, who have been together...

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Leif Ove Andsnes, Wigmore Hall review - brooding richness and fiery fervour

Leif Ove Andsnes has a distinctive voice at the piano; clear, controlled and powerful. He sits upright; his body barely moves, and his head sways gently to the melodies. But he never loses himself in the music, he is always in control.Andsnes is a...

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Pioro, Julien-Laferrière, BBC Philharmonic, Schwarz, Bridgewater Hall, Manchester review - joy on a Saturday night

This was at first sight a somewhat ordinary looking programme for the BBC Philharmonic: Beethoven, Brahms … even Stravinsky doesn’t frighten a Saturday night audience in Manchester these days. They come for a good night out and quite a lot...

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Ott, LSO, Stutzmann, Barbican review - highways to hell (and back)

In a Renaissance artist’s studio, a wannabe master proved his skill by drawing a perfect circle. Perhaps playing Beethoven’s A minor Bagatelle (aka “Für Elise”) as an encore should count as the pianist’s equivalent. At the Barbican last night, Alice...

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Kavakos, Royal Concertgebouw Orchestra, Harding, Barbican review - elegance without poise

The Concertgebouw Orchestra of Amsterdam began their two-concert visit to the Barbican with a crowd-pleasing programme: Brahms and Beethoven. We are used to hearing the pinpoint precision and transparent textures of the London Symphony Orchestra...

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