The Week in Reviews, Op. 244: Hilary Hahn; Augustin Hadelich; Philippe Quint; Leonidas Kavakos
In an effort to promote the coverage of live violin performance, Violinist.com each week presents links to reviews of notable concerts and recitals around the world.
Hilary Hahn performed a recital of solo Bach at Alice Tully Hall in New York.
- New York Times: "What most surprised me about Ms. Hahn’s take on Bach — she performed the first sonata and the first two partitas — was its throwback glamour....Her contemporaries often now play this repertory with feathered bow strokes, gestural phrasing and swift tempos inspired by the historically-informed-performance movement. Ms. Hahn plays as if that shift never occurred."
- New York Classical Review: "In every piece, she played the faster or more dance-like movements with a rock-solid downbeat—her rubato was selective and judicious—and that added a spring of flowing forward movement. These elements added up to Bach of uncommon depth. Her care for presenting Bach’s structure meant that, in each piece, she spun his notes, rhythms, and fleeting harmonies into architecture."
Hilary Hahn. Photo by Dana van Leeuwen, courtesy Decca.
Hilary Hahn performed a recital of solo Bach at the Kennedy Center Terrace Theater in D.C.
- The Washington Post: "She combined the best of old-school qualities — seamless legato phrasing, a muscular tone and a majestic sense of line — with more modern ideas about voicing, but without the breathy mannerisms that can afflict period performance. With her command of large-scale architecture and her subtle shadings, Hahn conjured into being a cathedral of sound: spacious and full of dazzling beauty."
Augustin Hadelich performed Bernstein's "Serenade" with the Pacific Symphony.
- Orange County Register: "He took command from the start with an unaccompanied solo that he actually made sound more interesting than it really is, thanks to his centered approach. His shining moment occurred in the fourth (slow) movement (of five), playing the simple, heartfelt melodies with such abandoned yearning while being awash by the orchestra’s luxurious tonal harmonies in a flawless balance between the two."
Philippe Quint performed John Corigliano’s Violin Concerto "The Red Violin" with the Utah Symphony.
- Utah Arts Review: "Playing his 1703 “Ruby” Stradivarius, Quint was dazzling in his colors and textures at all dynamic levels, especially the softer ones in the first and third movements"
- Front Row Reviewers Utah: "Quint plays his violin with so much emotion that you could feel it while he performed, even when three of his bow strings broke he continued like nothing happened."
Leonidas Kavakos conducted and performed Mozart Violin Concerto No. 5, with the Dallas Symphony Orchestra.
- Texas Classical Review: "As violinist, Kavakos combined an appealingly bright, sweet tone quality with some striking interpretive moments...All of this was undermined, however, by irritating glitches in ensemble, beginning with the rough initial orchestral entry."
- Dallas Morning News: "...clearly Kavakos, an acclaimed solo violinist with a sideline in conducting, had attended to the music's smallest details, and how they fit into compelling wholes."
Ioana Goicea performed Shostakovich Violin Concerto No. 1 with the Auckland Philharmonia Orchestra.
- Radio New Zealand: "Goicea effortlessly navigated the concerto’s immense technical, musical, and emotional challenges with a towering performance that was full of colour and nuance."
- New Zealand Herald: "Goicea explored the full expanse of its emotional terrain; her unwavering lyricism in the Nocturne and vibrant song in its dark Passacaglia contrasted with the scherzo's barbed lightning and the knockabout ironies of its Big Top Burlesca."
Kristóf Baráti performed Stravinsky's Violin Concerto in D major with the Mariinsky Orchestra in Northridge, Calif.
- Los Angeles Daily News: "From his first aggressive attack of the violin concerto’s opening Toccata, through the varied emotional landscapes of the Aria 1, Aria 2 and the final Capriccio, Baráti was in total command. His fingers were able and dexterous through the most demanding passages, at times moving at a speed that approached a blur."
Jennifer Frautschi performed the Barber Violin Concerto with Symphony Tacoma.
- Tacoma Weekly News: "Frautschi, a two-time Grammy nominee, started her violin off with a lush, throaty tone and then rapidly increased in pitch and speed."
Yevgeny Kutik performed Mozart Violin Concerto No. 3 with the Duluth Superior Symphony Orchestra.
- Duluth News Tribune: "The intricacy of Kutik's bow technique and the showmanship of his performance exhibited why this musician is celebrated so widely."
Simone Porter performed Prokofiev Violin Concerto No. 1 in D major with the Oklahoma City Philharmonic.
- The Oklahoman: "A rather safe performance, Porter's interpretation did not reach the extroverted levels of 'daring savagery;' however, it was incredibly heartfelt, and impeccably prepared, with a thoroughly captivating sound throughout."
Leonidas Kavakos performed Shostakovich Violin Concerto No. 1 with the Dallas Symphony Orchestra.
- Theater Jones: "(Kavakos) is a musician of the highest level; the kind of musician for whom Shostakovich’s concerto was made."
Karen Gomyo performed the Tchaikovsky Violin Concerto with the Houston Symphony.
- Texas Classical Review: "Soloist Karen Gomyo positively luxuriated in Tchaikovsky’s melodies. Whether they were big-hearted or introspective, she molded their contours sleekly and lingered over their most expressive turns of phrase."
Rachel Lee Priday performed the Brahms Violin Concerto with the Johannesburg Philharmonic.
- Artslink.co.za: "Priday, who plays with an enormous and strong sound from her violin, soared with bravura through her virtuosic part; as the orchestra took up the theme in the finale, she urged them to play it faster."
Ivan Ženatý performed in recital with pianist Dmitri Vorobievin Edmonton.
- Edmonton Journal: "Ženatý’s style is built around a deep and rich lower tone — something that seems to be a Czech tradition (it was certainly one of Joseph Suk the younger’s hallmarks), or perhaps a Dvorak tradition."
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