Israel Philharmonic Orchestra 521.
(photo credit: Yeugene/WikiCommons)
In his dual capacity as conductor- pianist, Andras Schiff proved that an
extraordinary instrumentalist can, exceptionally, be also an outstanding
conductor, in the Israel Philharmonic Orchestra’s matinee concert last
In Brahms’ Variations on a Theme by Haydn, Schiff seemed to play
the orchestra just as though he were playing the piano. Subtle unpredictable
nuances of dynamics were abundant. Delicate, almost imperceptible rubato changes
of tempi infused breathing life into the rendition, and clear-cut articulation
contributed plasticity. In particular, the last variation’s passacaglia- like
bass line often overshadowed by the boisterous orchestral din, was clearly
audible throughout, adding emphasis to the final climax.
frequently performed “Emperor” Concerto sounded fresh and spontaneous as though
heard for the first time – a formidable artistic achievement. The performance
was an impressive combination of emotional sensibility and intellectual
Melodic highpoints were accentuated significantly, and only the
gradual build-up of the transition from the slow movement was rushed headlong
into the Rondo, missing the final climactic outburst just by
Moderator Prof. Moshe Zuckermann attempted to point out the
common denominators, if any, between Beethoven and Brahms.