The Week in Reviews, Op. 136: Julia Fischer, Robert McDuffie, Noah Bendix-Balgley

June 21, 2016, 12:13 PM · In an effort to promote the coverage of live violin performance, each week presents links to reviews of notable concerts and recitals around the world.

Julia Fischer performed the Beethoven with the Chicago Symphony Orchestra.

Julia Fischer
Julia Fischer. Photo by Julia Wesely.

Robert McDuffie premiered the Concerto for Violin, Rock Band, and String Orchestra by R.E.M's Mike Mills.

Noah Bendix-Balgley premiered his klezmer concerto "Fidl-Fantazye" with the Pittsburgh Symphony Orchestra.

Diomedes Saraza Jr. performed the Sibelius with the Philippine Philharmonic Orchestra.

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June 22, 2016 at 01:02 AM · Julia Fischer played a splendidly crafted Beethoven in Chicago. It had beautiful breadth, clear structure, her tone noble, intense, every note full of meaning and purpose... A stunning, reference performance for the ages from a thoughtful and committed master! Brava!!! The Chicago band and Maestro Muti provided sensitive support and never overpowered the solo line, despite their too-large numbers on stage.

June 22, 2016 at 06:33 AM · Wow! She sounds amazing! That also sounds really hard to play, does it not?

June 22, 2016 at 10:56 PM · What piece did she play as her encore at the 6/21 concert?

June 23, 2016 at 11:54 PM · I'd really like to know what exactly "questions of taste" mean in the McDuffie review. It seems like an undefined cheap shot from a hack reviewer. If he can't expound on the statement he shouldn't have tossed it out there.

June 24, 2016 at 08:07 PM · Scott, I think that you are right that a reviewer is obliged to make a case for that kind of statement; he did make some colorful allusions in the review to "The half-hour long jumpy concerto" sounding like "a backtrack for a Los Vegas magic act" as well as over-amplification of the violin. I'm not sure if he was questioning the taste of the entire endeavor or of McDuffie in particular; to me it reads like the former.

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