The Week in Reviews, Op. 276: Joshua Bell; Escher String Quartet; Benjamin Beilman
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.
Joshua Bell performed Dvorak’s Violin Concerto in A minor with the Pittsburgh Symphony Orchestra.
- Pittsburgh Post-Gazette: "Mr. Bell’s playing was exquisite, particularly in the first two movements of the concerto. He captured the taut dynamism of Dvorak’s writing with a charismatic flair, melting gently into the softer phrases. His longer phrases are pure magic — he maintains the integrity of a musical line without sacrificing spontaneity."
The Escher String Quartet performed in the opening of the North Shore Chamber Music Festival
- Chicago Classical Review: "The ensemble’s blend of eruptive power and burnished refinement are ideal for Beethoven and this particular work. Their swift, seamless alternation of the aggressive unison opening motif and the ensuing lyrical theme set an apt atmosphere of unsettled dislocation."
Benjamin Beilman performed Prokofiev’s Violin Concerto No. 1 with the Grant Park Orchestra.
- Chicago Classical Review: "The Western Springs native plays with a limpid, even-keeled style that draws a straight line to the great mid-20-century virtuosos. But he can also rough it up when it wants to, as in his woodsy, coltish take on the second movement."
- Chicago Tribune: "Not until the final movement did Beilman find his voice, his extraordinarily sweet tone and sweeping melodic phrases at last getting to the meaning of this music."
Blake Pouliot performed the Ravel Sonata for Violin with pianist Stephen Prutsman at the Rockport Chamber Music Festival.
- The Boston Musical Intelligencer: "The composer joked that this work took so long to complete because the violin and piano are not compatible instruments, but the duo did a fine job reconciling their differences with nuanced shades of texture and long, arching lines."
Nemanja Radulovic performed Chausson's "Poème" with the Sydney Symphony Orchestra.
- Limelight: "From the violinist’s decisive first solo note – after the orchestra’s moody opening – to his final, whispering trill in the instrument’s stratosphere, Radulovic gave a sinuous, distinctive performance that delivered very much on colour, if not always on the work’s swelling emotion."
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