The Week in Reviews, Op. 396: Patricia Kopatchinskaja, Hilary Hahn, Emerson String Quartet
April 18, 2023, 2:35 PM · 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.
Violinist Patricia Kopatchinskaja. Photo courtesy of the artist.
Patricia Kopatchinskaja and vocalist Anna Prohaska performed a program called "Maria Mater Meretrix" with the Ensemble Resonanz.
- The Guardian: "It’s a thoughtfully put together collection (of music about Mary, mother of Jesus, and Mary Magdalene), beautifully paced and presented, and taking in 14 composers, from Hildegard of Bingen to George Crumb and György Kurtág, all performed with stylishness, verve and just a touch of theatricality by these superb artists."
Hilary Hahn the U.S. premiere of Einojuhani Rautavaara’s 'Deux Sérénades' with the Chicago Symphony Orchestra, Thomas Adès conducting.
- Chicago Classical Review: "Hahn brought her trademark poise and musical intelligence to the solo part, spinning the solo lines with graceful lyricism...Hahn returned for Sarasate’s extroverted Fantasy on Bizet’s Carmen for Violin and Orchestra, effortlessly shifting from Rautavaara’s meditative mood to the Spanish virtuoso’s showoff aesthetic."
The Emerson String Quartet performed a farewell concert in San Francisco's Herbst Theatre.
- San Francisco Classical Voice: "Chamber music, by design, cannot hope to compete with the sheer volume of a full orchestra, but in the Beethoven’s most powerful moments, the Emerson sounded downright symphonic. The group’s agility was on full display as the players seamlessly switched from contemplative and rich melodies in the second movement to the high-spirited vigor that raced through the coda of the Finale (of Beethoven’s String Quartet in E Minor, Op. 59, No. 2)."
Alexander Barantschik and oboist Eugene Izotov performed Bach’s Concerto for Violin and Oboe with San Francisco Symphony.
- San Francisco Chronicle Datebook: "The partnership between the two — trading melodic phrases, breathing together rhythmically as one, melding the different sounds of their respective instruments into a single radiant strand — was a revelatory kind of thrill."
- San Francisco Classical Voice: "...they played with pleasantly languid phrasing throughout. Barantschik’s tone was robust and meaty, and Izotov made the oboe sound like caramel; their interactions were natural and effortless."
Rachel Podger performed a program called "A Guardian Angel" with VOCES8, the British a cappella choral group.
- Ilkley Gazette: "...this is a collaboration in which Rachel Podger’s violin is an equal and her technique is equally flawless, able to produce magical piannisimi from her ‘re-barocked’ 18th century violin as well as the ability to cut through the vocal lines where necessary. 'A Guardian Angel' is not only an innovative programme but an immersive experience, and in this case, an unforgettable one!"
Blake Pouliot performed Camille Saint-Saëns’ Violin Concerto No. 3 with Madison Symphony Orchestra.
- The Cap Times: "Harmonics often have a soft, ethereal timbre, but Pouliot achieved a striking dynamic and vibrant tone with these most delicate notes. Equally as impressive was Pouliot’s gymnastic handling of the many quick bariolage and triple stops throughout the work. He is truly a fantastic technical player with a singular style and a fresh take on the standard repertoire."
Joshua Bell performed Mendelssohn’s Violin Concerto with the Palm Beach Symphony.
- South Florida Classical Review: "Joshua Bell found a way to inject novelty into the 179-year-old Mendelssohn Violin Concerto: He wrote his own cadenza.....Still youthful at the age of 55, Bell delivered a performance of Mendelssohn’s concerto at the Kravis Center in West Palm Beach that did the work full justice, in all its pathos, vulnerability and high spirits."
Augustin Hadelich performed Benjamin Britten’s Violin Concerto with the Atlanta Symphony Orchestra.
- Atlanta Journal-Constitution: "Thursday Hadelich and the ASO were perhaps too mild with the concerto, perhaps assuming to play the piece straight was enough."
Inmo Yang performed Dvorák’s Violin Concerto with the BBC Symphony Orchestra.
- The Arts Desk: ",Inmo Yang’s rendering of Dvorák’s concerto tended to play down its rustic and vernacular elements. His mellow and refined sound always felt closer to the Prague or Vienna salon than the spit-and-sawdust Bohemian tavern: not a criticism, given the sophisticated architecture of the piece."
He Ziyu performed Stravinsky's Violin Concerto with the Singapore Symphony Orchestra.
- The Straits Times: "(Ziyu) nailed its opening 'motto' chord (one uniting all movements) with confidence and exhibited pinpoint clarity in the fast and angular outer movements, a Toccata and Capriccio respectively."
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