Saturday, October 18, 2014

BSO — 2014/10/16-21

This week's concerts of music by Nielsen and Brahms were to have been conducted by the late Rafael Frühbeck de Burgos. His place on the podium will be taken by Thierry Fischer, who is coincidentally Keith Lockhart's successor as music director of the Utah Symphony. The program will be the one originally planned, with Rudolf Buchbinder as piano soloist in the Brahms.

Links to audio previews, program notes, and performer bios (click on the thumbnail pictures) are available at the orchestra's performance detail page, which also gives the following overview of the concerts:
Esteemed Austrian pianist Rudolf Buchbinder joins the BSO for Brahms's vast, emotionally intense D minor piano concerto, which the Viennese composer wrote over the course of several years, in part as a reaction to the tragedy of his mentor Robert Schumann's attempted suicide in 1854 and his death two years later. Brahms-still only in his mid-twenties-was soloist in the concerto's premiere in January 1859. The great Danish composer Carl Nielsen chose to write his Fourth Symphony, an expression of the "Elemental Will of Life," in one large movement. He prefaced this questing 1916 score with a telling aphorism: "Music is Life, and, like it, is Inextinguishable."
(Some emphasis added.)

The reviews in the Boston Globe and the Boston Musical Intelligencer were generally favorable, while pointing out aspects of the performances that each reviewer found less than ideal. But a comment on the Intelligencer review began as follows,
Nice review by Vance Koven…except I’d go much stronger. My best advice to any of you interested in great music-making is to run to the box office and snap up a ticket for one of these remaining concerts. It’s that good. Thursday night’s concert was exceptional. It was non-routine music-making at its best, with tremendous artists (Fischer and Rudolf Buchbinder), and the orchestra playing their hearts out. In what has already been a very strong start to the season (this is my third concert), this has been the best performance yet.
and continues with several paragraphs of equally enthusiastic detail.

I wasn't there on Thursday, having switched my ticket to next Tuesday, so I can't give my own impression. Based on the comment in the Intelligencer, though, I'm looking forward to this concert and I think it'll be worth your listening to it over WCRB this evening at 8:00 or Monday, October 27, also at 8:00 p.m., Boston Time. The station's BSO page has a listing of the broadcast/webstream schedules for the remainder of the season, along with numerous links to interviews and other items concerning this concert and other BSO happenings, including access to earlier concerts now available on demand.

Enjoy the show.

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