wed 16/08/2017

Southbank Centre

Richard Goode, Royal Festival Hall

How to change the way we hear Chopin and Beethoven: play Bach first. Richard Goode opened his Royal Festival Hall recital with the Partita No.6 in E minor, perhaps the most enigmatic and challenging of its siblings. Its intricate contrapuntal lines...

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Sebestyén, Budapest Festival Orchestra, Fischer, RFH

This was a very fine concert indeed, plus a lot more. The first half was a very carefully planned series of unveilings around the theme of Béla Bartók and Hungarian folk music, the second an overwhelming performance of his Duke Bluebeard’s...

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in vain, London Sinfonietta, Lubman, Royal Festival Hall

If Georg Friedrich Haas’s in vain was a work of political protest when it premiered in 2000, in 2017 it’s a piece that reads more like a commentary – a disturbing musical documentary that captures nearly 20 years of escalating European tensions,...

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Mahler 8, LPO, Jurowski, RFH

For the first performances of his Eighth Symphony in Munich, Mahler conducted 11 rehearsals. He arranged for the bells of the city’s trams to be silenced during the concerts. He left nothing to chance. On Saturday night, for once, one felt that all...

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Buchbinder, Philharmonia, Hrůša, RFH

It's a rare concert when nothing need be questioned about the orchestral playing. The usual nagging doubts – about whether any of the London orchestras has a recognisable sound-identity, or whether Rattle's swipe agains the two main London concert...

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Bryars and Reich, London Philharmonic Orchestra, RFH

In 1970, documentary maker Alan Power interviewed homeless people in the Elephant and Castle area of London. Rejected footage found its way to composer Gavin Bryars, including a short clip of an old man singing a snatch of a religious song. This...

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Maurizio Pollini, RFH

Age is finally catching up with Maurizio Pollini. This recital was one of a series to mark the pianist’s 75th birthday, presenting Beethoven piano sonatas, music at the core of his repertoire. His legendary status was justified by these readings,...

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NHK Symphony Orchestra, Tokyo, Järvi, RFH

Berlin and Vienna Philharmonics; Royal Concertgebouw Amsterdam; NHKSO Tokyo. Would you have thought of putting the Japanese orchestra in the same league as the top Europeans? I certainly wouldn't, at least not until last night. While there isn't the...

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10 Questions for Conductor Paavo Järvi

Now at the very top of his game and master of sundry great orchestras around the world, Paavo Järvi is the conductor students of the art like to follow for his perfect technique. Time was when he seemed like the cooler version of his peerless father...

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Aimard, Philharmonia, Salonen, RFH

A new work by Igor Stravinsky is always going to be a major event, so Sunday evening’s UK premiere of his rediscovered Funeral Song was hotly anticipated. The score disappeared after its first performance and was thought lost in the Russian...

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Hevisaurus, RFH

The idea of a heavy metal rock band for children might be somewhat lacking in appeal for some. Images of leather and chains, frightening make-up, Anthrax-style roaring into a microphone and satanic lyrics for dear little Jonti, all a bit...

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Mitsuko Uchida, Royal Festival Hall

Mitsuko Uchida specialises in elegant, if uncontroversial, interpretations of core Austro-German repertoire, yet she’s never predictable, and every performance is full of unexpected insights and welcome surprises. Mozart and Schumann stand at...

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