I used mostly my ears

a blog about music by Marc Haegeman


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Some Legends Never Die

Henri Vieuxtemps: Violin Concerto #4 in D minor, Op. 31 *
Piotr Ilyitch Tchaikovsky: Manfred Symphony, Op. 58

* Hilary Hahn, violin
Berlin Philharmonic Orchestra/Tugan Sokhiev
Berlin Philharmonie 31 May 2014

Hilary Hahn © Peter Miller/ DG

Hilary Hahn (© Peter Miller/ DG)

There is no doubt about it, catching the Berlin Philharmonic Orchestra in their iconic Philharmonie in their hometown, remains something of an event. Forget all the HD big screen broadcasts. Cliché but true: nothing beats the live experience. With a program described as “Two Symphonies, one with a soloist, one with a hero”, the Berlin Philharmonic under guest conductor Tugan Sokhiev and joined by violinist Hilary Hahn, offered a remarkable evening of undiluted romanticism. Neither Tchaikovsky’s Manfred Symphony nor Vieuxtemps’ 4th Violin Concerto are works one would readily associate with the Berliners, but then again, lest we should forget, the orchestra has long since left the path of security and predictability when it comes to repertory choice. It’s with an unusual setup like this that an orchestra can demonstrate its versatility and strength. And that’s exactly what happened here.
Read the full review on Classical Net


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Royal Liverpool Philharmonic in Paris

Ralph Vaughan Williams: Overture “The Wasps”
Wolfgang Amadeus Mozart: Piano Concerto #23, K. 488
Piotr Ilyitch Tchaikovsky: Manfred Symphony, Op. 58

Hélène Grimaud, piano
Royal Liverpool Philharmonic Orchestra/Vasily Petrenko
Théâtre des Champs-Elysées, Paris, 26 March 2011

The Royal Liverpool Philharmonic Orchestra under their chief conductor Vasily Petrenko appeared in Paris for a single concert that, according to the program notes, aimed to contrast classical harmony with the often unbridled expressivity of romantic music. Although the works chosen (Mozart’s Concerto for piano #23 and Tchaikovsky’s Manfred Symphony) are indeed foremost representatives of each genre, in practice the differences turned out to be less pronounced as was intended.
Read the full review on Classical Net