tue 16/07/2024

LSO

Coote, LSO, Tilson Thomas, Barbican review - the triumph of life

Programme notes for Mahler’s monumental symphonies will often blithely chat about the works’ epic struggle between life and death, creation and destruction, joy and dread. In a comfy hall with a slick orchestra and a polished maestro, all of that...

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Daphnis et Chloé, Tenebrae, LSO, Pappano, Barbican review - lighting up Ravel’s ‘choreographic symphony’

Antonio Pappano fervently believes that talking about music is a vital part of his communicative art, and nobody does it better. Given that the London Symphony Orchestra's enterprising Half Six Fix format is scheduled for an hour each time, and that...

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Gilliver, LSO, Roth, Barbican review - the future is bright

It’s hard to know which aspect of this adventure to praise the most. Perhaps the fact that of the four recent works originally programmed, the two freshest were by young beneficiaries of the LSO Panufnik Composers Scheme. There was also the pleasure...

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Gerstein, LSO, Rattle, Barbican review - American glitter and sinew

How lucky those of us were who grew up musically with the young Simon Rattle’s highly original programming in the 1980s. He’s still doing it at a time when diminishing resources can dictate more careful repertoire, and last night’s Americana proved...

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Faust, LSO, Rattle, Barbican review - violence and wit in Shostakovich, luminosity in Brahms

The LSO’s apéritif hour “Half-Six Fixes” have an informality that usually works and sometimes doesn’t. But the first of this two-night run of Dmitri Shostakovich’s monstrous and terrifying Fourth Symphony was unforgettable. Panels on the auditorium...

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Elijah, LSO, Pappano, Barbican review - vivid declamation powers Old Testament blockbuster

That it would be a vividly operatic kind of oratorio performance was never in doubt. Mendelssohn, who said he wanted to create “a real world, such as you find in every chapter of the Old Testament,” instigates high drama with Elijah’s brass-backed...

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Jenůfa, LSO, Rattle, Barbican review - a variegated but gorgeous bouquet

An inexhaustible masterpiece shows different facets with each new interpretation. I’d thought of Jenůfa, Janáček's searing tale of Moravian village life based on a great play by a pioneering woman (Gabriela Preissová), as an open razor rushing...

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Maestro review - the infinite variety of Leonard Bernstein

The only seriously false note about Maestro is its title. Yes, Bernstein was masterly as a conductor, and Bradley Cooper gives it his best shot. But he was no master of his life as a whole. Maybe the title should have been something like Lenny and...

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Selaocoe, Schimpelsberger, LSO, Ward, Barbican review - force of nature crowns dance jamboree

It was good of the EFG London Jazz Festival to support this concert and bring in a different audience from the one the LSO is used to. But how to define it? Jazz only briefly figured in works by Gary Carpenter, Bartók, Barber and Abel Selaocoe. The...

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Kopatchinskaja, LSO, Pappano, Barbican review - dancing on the volcano

Poetry came an honourable second to sharp rhythms and lurid definition in this choreographic poem of a concert. You don’t get more tumultuous applause after an opener than with Ravel’s La Valse played like this. Vienna may have nearly collapsed...

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Prom 49: Schumann, Das Paradies und die Peri, LSO, Rattle review - knocking on heaven's door

Have Proms audiences heard it all before? Not by the longest of chalks. Remarkably, last night saw the festival’s first outing for a major work by Robert Schumann.True, an extract from his secular oratorio Das Paradies und die Peri once reached the...

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Turangalîla-Symphonie, LSO, Rattle, Barbican review - a farewell night to remember

Simon Rattle’s farewell season as music director of the London Symphony Orchestra has inscribed a sort of artistic memoir as he moves from one of his beloved blockbusters to another. Last night, he closed his account at the Barbican (though he will...

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