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The Week in Reviews, Op. 37: Lisa Batiashvili performs the Sibelius

Robert Niles

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Published: July 2, 2014 at 7:33 PM [UTC]

In an effort to promote the coverage of live music, each week brings you links to reviews of notable violin performances from around the world.

Lisa Batiashvili
Photo courtesy the artist, © Anja Frers

Lisa Batiashvili performed the Sibelius with the Philharmonia Orchestra

  • The Guardian: "The Philharmonia were at their most refined and responsive throughout the evening (during Sibelius' violin concerto and second symphony), and neither performance could be faulted technically, but for the most part both works remained rather detached and uninvolving. That was despite the brilliance of the soloist Lisa Batiashvili in the concerto, and her fearless assault on its finale especially."
  • The Telegraph: "Lisa Batiashvili’s playing of the Violin Concerto was very welcome, mixing smooth-toned poise with rhapsodic intensity."
  • Financial Times: "The Georgian violinist Lisa Batiashvili gave us a soft-focus rendition of Sibelius’s Violin Concerto, all its sharp edges sanded down and polished to perfection, generating a warmth that suited the intimacy of the middle movement though less so the bleakness in the two outer sections."

Gil Shaham performed Prokofiev's Violin Concerto No. 2 with the San Francisco Symphony

  • Bay Area Reporter: "As expertly essayed by Gil Shaham, it proved an astringent palette-cleanser and more proof that Michael Tilson Thomas is especially sympathetic to the composer's tart harmonies, unique motoric rhythms and often surprisingly lush lyricism. We could have enjoyed Britten's own essay in the genre, but I would never pass on a chance to hear MTT or Shaham in Prokofiev, and the full house obviously agreed, with a hearty ovation."

Roberto Ruisi performed the Brahms with the Eastbourne Symphony Orchestra

  • Eastbourne Herald: "Roberto Ruisi’s performance was superb throughout: there is simply nothing to say beyond complimenting Graham Jones and the orchestra on their ability to rise to so commanding a level. A long-standing ovation was sufficient to confirm my feeling that we were privileged to be seeing a young man who will soon be in great demand worldwide.”

If you know of a published review of a professional violin performance from this week, please email a link to, and we will include it in next week's post.

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