Blog Archives

Renée Fleming, Barbican Hall (Review)

Building a memorable solo recital is an art in itself – that we know – but personalising it so precisely to your vocal character that it’s hard to imagine other voices even contemplating such a programme, now that is real artistic ingenuity. Renée Fleming said it herself as she charmingly set us up for her … [Read More]

Posted on 10/12/2012
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Posted in Classical Music, Reviews

St Petersburg Philharmonic, Vengerov, Temirkanov, Barbican Hall

When you are arguably the greatest violinist in the world a four-year “time out” from the public arena can seem like an eternity. But it’s a time for renewal, too, and though absence makes audiences’ hearts grow fonder (and nowhere more so than in London), expectations grow higher, too. Which is perhaps why – on … [Read More]

Posted on 25/03/2012
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New York Philharmonic Orchestra, Gilbert, Barbican Hall

For the New York Philharmonic to have embarked upon a London residency without Mahler in their portfolio would have been unconscionable. It was they, after all, who brought it to the wider world under their most celebrated music director Leonard Bernstein. But Alan Gilbert, the current incumbent, is no Bernstein – few are – and … [Read More]

Posted on 17/02/2012
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Leipzig Gewandhaus Orchestra, Chailly, Barbican Hall

The venerable and venerated Leipzig Gewandhaus Orchestra gave the first ever complete cycle of Beethoven symphonies and Riccardo Chailly, their 19th Kapellmeister, was impatient to renew that sense of revelation and surprise in an age when each of the nine has grown so familiar that restoring the elusive shock-of-the-new factor can and does separate the … [Read More]

Posted on 27/10/2011
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National Youth Orchestra, Jarvi, Barbican Hall

It was as audacious as it was challenging: a programme to wreak havoc on sensitive dispositions – and because this was the National Youth Orchestra there was something incredibly liberating about the welter of sound that unleashed it. The fabulous anarchy of Prokofiev’s Scythian Suite bore down on us with three tubas, extra horns and … [Read More]

Posted on 08/01/2011
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