tue 20/10/2020

Bartók

London Symphony Orchestra, Hasan, LSO St Luke's review - dances great and small

Big orchestras to serve the late romantic masterpieces and contemporary blockbusters still aren’t the order of the Covid-era day, even in streamed events, at least not in the UK. The London Symphony Orchestra is so far unique in bigging up the...

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Eavesdropping on Rattle, the LSO and Bartók’s Bluebeard

One source of advance information told us to expect a reduced version of Bartók’s one-act Bluebeard’s Castle, among the 20th century’s most original and profound operatic masterpieces. Joining 19 other lucky invitees and some of the LSO brass...

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Classical Music/Opera direct to home 4 - Rattle in the ether

He may no longer be the Berlin Philharmoniker's Chief Conductor, but by a combination of serendipity and foresight on the orchestra's part, Simon Rattle's last concert in Berlin for the foreseeable future was filmed without an audience and led the...

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Anderszewski, CBSO, Wellber, Symphony Hall Birmingham review - grandeur in restraint

No orchestra wants its conductor to cancel in the week of a concert. Mirga Gražinytė-Tyla’s illness was announced only on Monday, but even in ideal conditions, if you needed to find a last minute replacement maestro for a programme of Bartók and...

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Kolesnikov, Tsoy, Currie, Walton, Wigmore Hall review - mesmerising sonorities

Fine-tuning piano sound to Wigmore acoustics can elude even the greatest. Add a second Steinway and a wide range of percussion instruments, and the risks would seem to be hugely increased. So it was amazing to witness what seemed like sonic...

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Poster, Cabeza, Aurora Orchestra, Collon, Kings Place review – shock of the new

Mozart’s piano concertos often overflow with good humour, but you seldom expect to hear a hearty chuckle from the audience in the middle of a performance of one. Yet something close to a guffaw burst out around King’s Place when soloist Tom Poster,...

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Classical CDs Weekly: Saint-Saëns, Yolanda Kondonassis, Konstantin Reinfeld & Benyamin Nuss

 Saint-Saëns: Piano Concertos 3, 4 & 5 Alexandre Kantorow (piano), Tapiola Sinfonietta/Jean-Jacques Kantorow (BIS)Saint-Saëns’ five piano concertos are a pleasure no one need feel guilty about indulging in. My current go-to cycle is a...

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The Souvenir review – Joanna Hogg's most emotionally wrenching film yet

Joanna Hogg’s melancholy autobiographical drama The Souvenir cuts too close to the bone. That’s a compliment: like Sally Rooney’s equally unsettling first novel Conversations With Friends, Hogg’s movie almost forces the viewer to relive that...

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Classical CDs Weekly: Bartók, Howells, Third Coast Percussion

 Bartók: The Wooden Prince, Suite from The Miraculous Mandarin Helsinki Philharmonic Orchestra/Susanna Mälkki (BIS)Bartók's The Wooden Prince is a one-off in the composer's output, an evocative, expansive ballet score that will surprise anyone...

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Classical CDs Weekly: Bartók, Bruckner, Busoni

 Bartók: Complete String Quartets Quatuor Diotima (Näive)Technical infallibility is now a non-negotiable when it comes to Bartók's six fiendishly difficult string quartets. Still, there's much more to these pieces than simply hitting the right...

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Classical CDs Weekly: Mahler, Schumann, Tamara Stefanovich

 Mahler: Symphony No 7 Budapest Festival Orchestra/Ivan Fischer (Channel Classics)“It is my best work and it has a cheerful character.” So said Mahler about his Symphony No 7, and on the basis of this exuberant, feisty performance, Ivan Fischer...

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Takács Quartet, Wigmore Hall review – strong voices in a glorious group

When critics praise a first-rank string quartet, convention demands they claim that the whole adds up to more than the sum of its parts. True enough, maybe, but with the Takács Quartet, each separate element really does blaze with a soloistic,...

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