Concert Review: Israel Philharmonic Orchestra

Romantic Music - Jerusalem ICC - November 22

November 24, 2010 21:27
Concert Review: Israel Philharmonic Orchestra

orchestra 88. (photo credit: )

The Israel Philharmonic Orchestra’s concert this week overflowed with Romanticism – Schumann and Chopin, as well as two Tchaikovsky pieces for good measure.

Nikolai Lugansky, the soloist who played Chopin’s Piano Concerto No. 1, proved that he could make the piano sing with a captivating soft touch in the melodious passages. In the fast movements, he displayed brilliant virtuosity. He maintained formidable flexibility, allowing the music to breathe between phrases and convey its lyrical content.

The final movement glided off the keys with delicate sparkle and elegance.

Russian conductor Kirill Petrenko presented an electrifying rendition of Tchaikovsky’s Francesca da Rimini and Capriccio Italien.

The performance was impressively stormy and energetic, but Petrenko also understood that true musicality is proven not just by letting loose boisterous masses of orchestral sound but also by his ability to restrain the instruments to a subtle pianissimo where appropriate and to crystalclear transparency, despite this composer’s heavy orchestration.

These carefully conceived contrasts between high-voltage drama and endearing gracefulness sustained the level of artistic tension throughout the performance.

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