Engrossing Finnish premiere of Kaija Saariaho’s absorbing Saarikoski Songs with Anu Komsi, the FRSO and Sakari Oramo

Soprano Anu Komsi and the Finnish Radio Symphony Orchestra under Sakari Oramo performing Kaija Saariaho's Saarikoski Songs (2020-21) at Helsinki Music Centre. © Jari Kallio Joined this week by chief conductor emeritus Sakari Oramo, soprano Anu Komsi and the Helsinki Music Centre Choir, the Finnish Radio Symphony Orchestra presented their in-house and online audiences with... Continue Reading →

Illustrious album rendition of Music for 18 Musicians from Colin Currie Group and Synergy Vocals

If one was to shortlist the seminal musical works of the 20th century, Steve Reich’s Music for 18 Musicians (1974-76) would certainly assume its rightful position alongside such game-changing scores as Igor Stravinsky’s Le Sacre du printemps (1911-13/1947) and Olivier Messiaen’s Turangalîla-Symphonie (1946-48). Rooted in solid sonorous architecture, clad in raiments of exquisite colour and... Continue Reading →

Illuminated take on the Beethoven concerto from Veronika Eberle, the LSO and Rattle, featuring splendid new cadenzas by Jörg Widmann

Among the violin concerti, Ludwig van Beethoven’s solitary completed foray to the medium, the Concerto in D major, op. 61 (1806), is a veritable gem, one of striking originality. A subtly radical affair, the three-movement concerto may not come off as a vehicle of tempestuous virtuosity; instead, there is unprecedented meditative ambiance embedded in the... Continue Reading →

Towering Mahler 2 from Orchestre de Paris and Klaus Mäkelä at Elbphilharmonie, coupled with absorbing Mark Andre premiere

Klaus Mäkelä conducting Mahler 2 with Orchestre de Paris, Carl-Philipp-Emanuel-Bach-Chor Hamburg, soprano Mari Eriksmoen and alto Wiebke Lehmkuhl at Elbphilharmonie on Sunday. © Daniel Dittus In context, Gustav Mahler’s Symphony No. 2 (1888-1894/1895-1910) in five movements marks the apex of a long thread of embedding dramatic narratives in symphonic context. In addition, the eighty-minute score... Continue Reading →

Ravishing Berlioz and fiery Sibelius with Orchestre de Paris, Klaus Mäkelä and Janine Jansen at Elbphilharmonie

Violinist Janine Jansen, Orchestre de Paris and Music Director Klaus Mäkelä performing Sibelius at Elbphilharmonie on Saturday. © Sören L. Schirmer On tour, the Orchestre de Paris and their Music Director Klaus Mäkelä arrived at Elbphilharmonie on Saturday for two eagerly-awaited performances in the hall’s celebrated acoustics. Their first evening featured an intrguing coupling of... Continue Reading →

Extraordinary San Francisco Symphony SoundBox with Esa-Pekka Salonen, Yuja Wang, Nico Muhly, Ross Jamie Collins & co at Elbphilharmonie

Members of the San Franciso Symphony performing Nico Muhly's Two Motets (2007) with Music Director Esa-Pekka Salonen at Elbphilharmonie Recital Hall on Friday. © Daniel Dittus Reinventing concert settings in meaningful ways is somewhat tricky business. However, yesterday’s San Francisco Symphony SoundBox performance at Elbphilharmonie Recital Hall proved that with solid core ideas and appropriate... Continue Reading →

Musical masterstokes with Yuja Wang, the San Francisco Symphony and Esa-Pekka Salonen at Elbphilharmonie

The San Francisco Symphony and Music Director Esa-Pekka Salonen performing Gabriella Smith's Tumblebird Contrails (2014) at Elbphilharmonie on Thursday. © Sebastian Madej Summoned to the Elbphilharmonie stage for the second time around this week, the San Francisco Symphony and Music Director Esa-Pekka Salonen, teaming up with pianist Yuja Wang, ventured on to deliver another feast... Continue Reading →

The San Francisco Symphony and Salonen threw a party at Elbphilharmonie

Music Director Esa-Pekka Salonen conducting the San Francisco Symphony at Elbphilharmonie on Wednesday. © Daniel Dittus Lauching their three-day Elbphilharmonie residency in style, the San Francisco Symphony and Music Director Esa-Pekka Salonen served the Hamburg audience fabulously on Wednesday evening, with a powerhouse outing of a terrific programme, featuring four exquisite 20th and 21st century... Continue Reading →

The Cleveland Orchestra’s online presence grows stronger

Music Director Franz Welser-Möst, conducting Mahler 2 (1888-94/1895-1910) with the Cleveland Orchestra and Chorus, featuring mezzo-soprano Marie-Nicole Lemieux and soprano Lauren Snouffer as soloists. © Roger Mastroianni, courtesy of the Cleveland Orchestra During the pandemic, the Cleveland Orchestra launched two substantial initiatives in reaching out to audiences beyond the ensembles’s gorgeous Severance Hall home base.... Continue Reading →

Solid Holländer from Tampere Opera

The meeting of the Dutchman and Senta. © Petri Nuutinen / Tampere Hall Back on track after series of Covid cancellations over the past couple of years, the Tampere Opera has put together an appealing new production of Richard Wagner’s Der fliegende Holländer (The Flying Dutchman, 1841/1842-80), directed by Marika Vapaavuori, and featuring the Tampere... Continue Reading →

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