Dmitry Hvorostovsky sings Rachmaninov's In The Silence of the Secret Night from a 1990 recital. This was not long after he had won the 1989 Cardiff Singer of the World Competition.
Edwaard Liang, artistic director of BalletMet in Columbus, Ohio, announces that the company will hold auditions in New York City:
January 18th, 2014
School of American Ballet
70 Lincoln Center Plaza
New York, NY 10023
Registration begins at 4pm. The audition is from 5-8pm.
For further information, e-mail Rebecca Rodriguez-Hodoryat at:
November 26, 2013 | Permalink
Above: Erin Ginn of SenseDance
Sunday November 24th, 2013 - Henning Rubsam's SenseDance in a programme of new and older works at Peridance. On a frigid evening I trekked across The Village to attend this performance in which several friends were involved. The performance, which played to a full house, started late which put me in a grumpy funk. As the evening progressed, the dancers slowly dispelled my cranky mood.
Much of the programme was given over to duets, well-danced, in many different styles. The first two of these were from past works: Sarabande from MERCILESS BEAUTY (2006) is a straight-up ballet pas de deux to Bach danced by the lyrically lovely Erin Ginn and and her partner, Nathan Bland; it ends with the girl borne off in a sustained overhead lift. On a more playful note, Save The Country from the 1997 Laura Nyro tribute ART OF LOVE found Jacqueline Stewart and Oisín Monaghan rolling around on the floor.
Three premieres sustained the duet motif: in the first - RUSSIAN LESSON - to a 'spoken' score, Juan Rodriguez and Matt Van overcome a language barrier with some athletic sparring mixed with some cozying up: it feels like they are headed for a hotel room. This piece could be sub-titled Found In Translation.
Above: Temple Kemezis, photo by Matt Murphy
Spoken word features also in BORDERS, a stylized and other-worldly duet danced by Temple Kemezis and Henning Rubsam; this displayed Mr. Rubsam's choreography at its most impressive, and Temple, with her unique look and potent dancing, seemed wonderfully at home in this dancescape.
Above: Oisín Monaghan, photo by Kokyat
Oisín Monaghan then joined Heidi Green in a 'young romance" duet - AN EINSAMER QUELLE - set to music of Richard Strauss. Some dancers are blessed with a unique and instantly identifiable 'signature' and Oisín is surely one of these. To date, no choreographer seems to have truly captured Oisín's essence in dance - several have come very, very close - but perhaps it is exactly that elusive quality that keeps us fascinated. Here he and Ms. Green gave an attractive performance.
Henning Rubsam's HALF-LIFE is something of a signature piece for the choreographer. RELOAD has now been added to the title, and the cast has expanded from four to seven. I felt the original quartet setting to be preferable - our focus is now drawn in too many different directions as the dancers come and go. I missed the clarity and crispness of the original. Nevertheless, the ballet was very well-danced tonight with an outstanding performance from Matt Van.
The evening's final new work was SARAO, a jazzy pas de deux to music by Ricardo Llorca. This piece featured some of the evening's most imaginative partnering and was finely executed by Erin Ginn & Matt Van.
Above: Lloyd Knight, photo by Nir Arieli
Making a guest appearance with SenseDance, Lloyd Knight of the Martha Graham Dance Company joined Temple Kemezis in CAVES, a 2006 duet to a Ricardo Llorca score with a Spanish guitar ambiance. The two dancers brought both their physical prowess and their strong personalities to bear on this work which seems to alternate between allure and antagonism. Ms. Kemezis executes deep pliés in second and a sort of crab-walk reminiscent of Wendy Whelan in Christopher Wheeldon's MORPHOSES. Lloyd Knight's authoritative partnering, keen feeling for dynamic tension, and tantalizing torso all meshed into a compellingly charismatic performance. In this suggestive' battle of the sexes' duet, the woman wins - doesn't she always? Sustained applause followed this pas de deux, though the bows were saved for the end of the evening.
Excerpts from Henning Rubsam's 2012 BRAHMS DANCES closed the evening on a romantic note. Duets for Ms. Stewart with Matt Van and Ms. Green with Nathan Bland had a nocturnal feeling, and then a large ensemble passage which evoked a waltz-filled ballroom.
November 25, 2013 | Permalink
Saturday November 23, 2013 - New Chamber Ballet's 2013-2014 season continued this evening with a program featuring a Miro Magloire premiere and a revised version of a Constantine Baecher ballet. As always at New Chamber Ballet, live music was an essential component of the performance: pianist Melody Fader and violinist Doori Na were in their element, particularly in the very demanding (commissioned) score by Michel Galante for Miro's new ballet.
In Miro's "A Present" which opened the evening, three women (Elizabeth Brown, Holly Curran, and Amber Neff) go to great lengths to have and to hold onto a necklace which has been sent them by an unknown admirer. A note is enclosed with the gift, but we never learn who it is from or what it says. After some under-handed pilfering and a frantic chase, the bauble is destroyed and the note torn to shreds. Doori Na played a suite of melodies from Tchaikovsky's Nutcracker, arranged for solo violin, while the three girls fought for possession of the mysterious gift.
Another conflict ballet comes in the form of Miro's "Sister, My Sister" wherein dancer Amber Neff is annoyed - to the point of becoming homicidal - by her sister, soprano Charlotte Mundy. The Morton Feldman score calls for Ms. Mundy to vocalize on single, sustained notes. This gets under her sister's skin. Melody Fader and Doori Na (unseen) played the angular Feldman score as the two women battled it out.
"Stay With Me", the new Magloire/Galante collaboration, is perhaps Miro's finest achievement to date. There are narrative undercurrents but no specific scenario is suggested: the ballet is essentially two duets - the first for Holly Curran and Traci Finch and the second danced by Ms. Curran with Sarah Atkins. The girls wear simple tights and halter tops. In the first duet, Holly and Traci dance an entwined mirror-image adagio; Traci at one point executes a wonderfully fluid backbend. Sarah Atkins silently observes the end of the Traci/Holly duet and then she takes Traci's place - as the latter walks away - and continues the dance with Holly. The choreography presents a stylized language of intimacy, and the mystery of who these women are and what they mean to one another remains unsolved as the ballet ends.
Above: dancers Holly Curran and Traci Finch in a rehearsal image by Amber Neff
The Galante score for "Stay With Me" is fascinating and it challenges the two musicians in terms of both technique and stamina. The piece opens with both piano and violin playing in the highest range. Doori's violin slithers up and down rapid chromatic scales or lingers for measure after measure on a single pinging tone, while Melody at one point produces a series of sweeping downhill glissandi covering the full keyboard; elsewhere the piano writing favors ethereal high shimmers. Kudos to these two musicians for their spell-binding performance. "Stay With Me" is a ballet I will want to see and hear again soon.
Constantine Baecher's "Allow You To Look At Me" was originally a sort of joint-biography of Mr. Baecher and dancer Elizabeth Brown and their long-time association. In tonight's revision, now titled "Allow You To Look At Me Again" that intensely personal element has been discarded in favor of a more generalized narrative about what it means to perform and to expose oneself to public scrutiny. Narrator Jonathan Parks-Ramage now reads the biographies of each of the three participants - Ms. Brown, Holly Curran and Mr. Baecher - rather than the former poetic story of Constantine and Elizabeth's mutual admiration. At the piano, Melody Fader plays familiar melodies which underline the personal facets of each dancer's self-view. The solo for Elizabeth Brown, danced to Debussy's ever-poignant Clair de Lune, was the evocative apex of the ballet and a lovely portrait of this dictinctive dancer. The work, though now less personal, remains powerful.
November 24, 2013 | Permalink
Above: Audrey Crabtree-Hannigan of Columbia Ballet Collaborative; she appeared tonight in works by Dan Pahl and Donna Salgado
Friday November 22, 2013 - Columbia Ballet Collaborative danced for a packed house at Manhattan Movement and Arts Center tonight; extra rows of chairs were set out to accomodate an over-flow crowd which included many dancers and choreographers. Enthusiasm ran high for the six new works which were offered: well-contrasted pieces in a well-lit production and featuring an energetic ensemble of dancers, many of whom appeared in more than one ballet.
Claudia Schreier's Harmonic opened the evening: yet another success for this choreographer who has an instinctive gift for movement and musicality. Her pas de quatre, to vividly danceable music by Douwe Eisenga, was well-danced by John Poppe, Rebecca Green, Sarah Silverblatt-Buser and Claire Wampler, each of whom has a solo passage woven into the fast-paced ensemble; John partners each of the girls in turn. Strong individual performances and good eye contact between the dancers held our focus, with excellent use of space and interesting patterns evolving in this seamless dancework. I have a feeling we'll be seeing this piece again.
Dan Pahl set his new work The Sum of Its Parts to music by The Shanghai Restoration Project. The score opens like a giant machine, progressing to elements of rock, electric fiddle, and club music. Six girls filled the space with so much energy that they seemed like a dozen dancers: some really fine individual work here. Wearing metallic silver tops, the girls look like contemporary Valkyries with a suggestive sway in their movement. Two chairs are sat in, danced on and vaulted over; there's quite a bit of floor-work and it's very well integrated into the ballet's overall structure.
Above: Rebecca Walden danced in ballets by Ja' Malik and Richard Isaac
Ja' Malik created an on-pointe ballet to Philip Glass's exciting four-part suite 'Company'; the ballet is entitled Brief Company. Ja' makes excellent use of the classic ballet vocabulary in a contemporary setting and his dancers met all the demands of Ja's choreography with both energy and artistry. Rebecca Walden opens the ballet in a beautiful solo passage; clad in pale aquamarine, she then begins to circle the stage in silence. In the darkness she comes upon the prone body of a man: guest dancer Joshua Henry. He rises as if from deep sleep and they dance a duet with complex partering motifs. Mr. Henry, tall and powerful of physique, was a good match for the impassioned Ms. Walden. Four girls form an integrated ensemble around the central couple. Mr. Henry's expressive solo is danced in a patch of light, and then the ballet seemed poised to end in an agitated ensemble movement; but instead Ja' interestingly clears the stage, leaving Ms. Walden to circle the space, resuming her silent, questing walk as darkness falls. Ja's ballet elicited a whooping ovation from the crowd.
Richard Isaac has created a contemporary 'white ballet' with its title Night Music drawn from Mozart's immortal 'Eine Kleine Nachtmusik'. The piece has a formal feeling, the dancers stepping out of a line-up to perform solos in the opening passage which is set to an Alexander Rastakov Mozart-hommage. As the lights blaze up, a spacious quartet ensues, danced to the Nachtmusik proper. After a structured walkabout the dancers re-group in a row before erupting into movement again. An especially intriguing segment finds Rebecca Walden being manipulated like a doll by her fellow dancers (Dan Pahl, Delaney Wing and Ms. Silverblatt-Buser).
Above: Rebecca Green appeared in new works by Devin Alberda and Claudia Schreier
A relentess pulsing rhythm marks the opening of Devin Alberda's pas de trois entitled Sissy Fists, the title a play on 'Sisyphus' but loaded with other implications. To music by Anna Meredith, two tall boys - John Poppe and Taylor Minich, in sleek body tights - are joined by Rebecca Green, dancing on pointe. The boys seem to be bonding but Ms. Green tends to intervene. Tension and traces of levity thread thru this dancework; as the music turns ominous, the boys' mutual partnering becomes more fervent. The choreography's dynamics reflect the music; there's a darkening quality that I really like. It's a ballet I want to see again.
The evening's largest piece, A Portrait of Growth, is an all-female ensemble work by Donna Salgado to music by the husband-and-wife duo Houses, is the programe's finale. Exploring the development of self-identity, this dancework seems especially suited to a college-based company. The ten girls break from unison passages to individual expression; solos danced by Audrey Crabtree-Hannigan, Julia Davis-Porada and Melissa Kaufman-Gomez draw us to their distinctiveness. And there is a line-up from which each girl momentarily steps forward in a brief phrase with a personal hue. The ballet reflects a period of time when life seems fulls of promise and possibility.
November 23, 2013 | Permalink
Thursday November 21, 2013 - The New York Philharmonic's celebration of the 100th anniversary of the birth of Benjamin Britten was a lovely fête which brought forth the composer's familiar Serenade for Tenor, Horn and Strings and the less-frequently-performed Spring Symphony.
The performance took on added drama when the scheduled tenor was forced to withdraw for health reasons literally on the eve of the concert. This caused the Philharmonic to launch a desparate search for tenors who could 1) sing this demanding music and 2) were available on such short notice. Things turned out very well indeed, with a disarmingly attractive performance of the Serenade by Michael Slattery and a thoroughly impressive rendering of the Spring Symphony by Dominic Armstrong who, as Maestro Alan Gilbert told us, had never so much as looked at the score til the morning of the performance.
The richly emotional Serenade for Tenor, Horn and Strings opens and closes with solo passages for horn which are played without use of the valves that stabilize pitch. The instrument is difficult enough to play as it is - I know: I played horn in high school - but Britten throws in this extra complication to render the sound with a 'hunting horn' ambiance. Thus the Philharmonic's formidable principal horn, Philip Myers, appeared onstage with two horns - one for the Prologue and Epilogue, and the second 'normal' horn for the remaining movements of the work.
Britten sets the Serenade’s poems, which span five centuries of English verse, in the upper range of the tenor voice; this gives the music an air of rather eerie innocence, yet the singer must also show great maturity in terms of both technique and sensitivity to the texts. The vocal movements are: “Pastoral” (with text by Charles Cotton), a hymn to sunset which sounds like a lilting lullabye; “Nocturne” (to words by Alfred, Lord Tennyson), where the horn calls echo as evening falls over the land; William Blake’s “Elegy”, which addresses a dying rose and is tinged with plaintive melancholy. In the Serenade's most unsettling passage, to an anonymous 15th-century text, the "Dirge" is a fugue of relentless, creeping madness evoking the fires of Hell which will 'burn thee to the bare bone...and Christ receive thy soul' (this song haunts me for days everafter whenever I hear it). In sharp contrast, Ben Jonson’s “Hymn” is light-hearted and upbeat, bringing the singer's task to an 'excellently bright' conclusion. As the voice falls silent, the offstage horn closes the Serenade on a benedictive note.
I had heard tenor Michael Slattery (above) often during his time at Juilliard, and was pleased to be present at his impromptu Philharmonic debut tonight. Slender and boyish in his elegant tux, Michael took the high tessitura in stride, with many felicitous passages of vocal color and inflection: his diction was clear and touchingly expressive. Philip Myers played with gleaming, burnished tone and exceptional power in the phrases that serve as a counter-poise to the voice. Maestro Gilbert drew evocative playing from the string ensemble, and the entire performance had a nocturnal incandescence that was truly pleasing. Michael Slattery reacted with disarming sincerity to the audience's warm applause, being called out with Mr. Myers and the conductor for extra bows.
The Spring Symphony was commissioned by the Koussevitzky Music Foundation and is dedicated to Serge Koussevitzky and the Boston Symphony Orchestra though it was actually premiered at the Conncertgebouw in Amsterdam during July 1949 before its American premiere the following month at Tanglewood by Koussevitzky and the BSO. Britten calls for a huge orchestra, adult and children's choruses, and three vocal soloists. The score is dazzling in its range of instrumental colours and textures, and the texts include both hymns of praise to the coming of Spring and some charming moments of levity in depicting day-to-day happenings. This work is quintessentially British: the poems invoke English pastoral imagery and the deftly 'sudden' ending - "And now, my friends, I cease" - is punctuated by a plump C-major chord.
Maestro Gilbert marshalled his forces for a thoroughly impressive and enjoyable performance: a special "hurrah" for the Brooklyn Youth Chorus who are called upon to both sing and whistle. The 'save the day' performance by tenor Dominic Armstrong revealed an attractive voice with mastery of dynamics and colours as well as of textual incisiveness that belied his unfamiliarity with the work. The slender and very pretty soprano Kate Royal has a feather-light lyric soprano and sang charmingly while the distinctive voice of Sasha Cooke - heard only two days earlier at Chamber Music Society - stood out for glowing tone and poetic resonance.
This was my first time experiencing the Spring Symphony - I'd never even heard it on a recording - and it was a very good idea of Maetro Gilbert's to choose it as a birthday salutation for the composer, for it is not often performed.
I must register one tiny complaint - nothing to do with the music or the musicians - but I do wish that plastic water bottles could be banned from the concert stages. In the 'old days' small tables were set next to the soloists' chairs with glasses of water which the singers could sip decorously between numbers. Now we have a distracting ritual of bending over, uncapping the bottle and gulping away like basketball players on the bench. The 'old way' of hydrating is much more elegant, and far less conspicuous.
November 22, 2013 | Permalink
Above: Miki Orihara in Graham's Hérodiade
Wednesday November 20, 2013 - Two of today's foremost interpreters of the works of Martha Graham - Miki Orihara and Katherine Crockett - appeared tonight in a studio showing of the great choreographer's 1944 work Hérodiade. As a splendid prelude, Ms. Crockett also danced Spectre-1914. It was an evening that resonated for me in so many different ways.
Martha Graham Dance Company's artistic director Janet Eilber welcomed an overflow crowd to this second of three presentations of this programme. The Company's spacious studio/theater on the eleventh floor of the Westbeth complex had been hung with black drapes, and after Ms. Eilber's brief remarks, the majestic Katherine Crockett appeared to dance Spectre-1914, the opening solo from Martha Graham's Chronicle.
Above: Katherine Crockett, photographed by Matt Murphy
Chronicle, dating from 1936, is Graham's powerful statement on the devastation and futility of war; it is a great masterwork for female ensemble and it opens with a magnificent solo in which the dancer manipulates a voluminous skirt lined in red fabric to evoke both the bloodshed and the flames of war.
Spectre-1914 had all but passed from memory until 1994 when it was researched and reconstructed by Terese Capucilli and Carol Fried, using film clips and still photos by Barbara Morgan. May Terpsichore bless these women for their efforts, for Spectre-1914 is as powerful a dancework as may be found, and it was danced tonight with marvelous amplitude and a deep sense of consecration by the marvelous Katherine Crockett. The audience beheld the dance in an awed state of pin-drop silence.
Above: the Isamu Noguchi set pieces for Martha Graham's Hérodiade
After the Noguchi setting had been swiftly installed in the space, we watched a full performance of Graham's ballet Hérodiade. Set to music by Paul Hindemith and commissioned by Elizabeth Sprague Coolidge for the Library of Congress, the ballet was originally called Mirror Before Me, and was first seen on October 30, 1944, at the Elizabeth Sprague Coolidge Auditorium, Library of Congress, Washington, D.C. Writing of that performance for the New York Times (November 1, 1944), critic John Martin said: "Miss Graham has created a powerful study of a woman awaiting a 'mysterious destiny' of which she has no knowledge...into it she has poured a somber tension that is relentless and altogether gripping. The music is rich and dark in color and the action on the stage meets it magnificently on its own terms."
That music, scored for chamber orchestra, was written by Paul Hindemith, a composer perhaps best-loved in the dance world for his superb Four Temperaments, choreographed by Balanchine.
When I received the announcement that Hérodiade would be performed this evening, I suppose my natural reaction as an opera-lover was that it would be a dance about the Biblical princess Herodias and her daughter Salome and their conspiracy to have the prophet John the Baptist executed. But that is not the case: there are no allusions to either the Strauss or Massenet operas, nor to the Bible, nor to Oscar Wilde who penned the famous play Salome - Salome does not figure in the Graham work at all.
Martha Graham had been interested in the poem Hérodiade by Stephane Mallarmé and in creating her ballet, the choreographer eschewed a specific narrative and instead turned to an abstraction of the character. Herodias is never named; she is simply referred to as 'A Woman'. In Graham's description, we see "a glimpse into the mirror of one's being," and she refers to this Woman as 'doom-eager', going forth with resolve to embrace her destiny.
The Hindemith score is in eleven short movements, and we watch with intense interest as the radiant Miki Orihara, as the Woman in a deep violet gown, and the more austere Ms. Cockett, her Attendant in simple grey, move about the space. The choreography is restless and urgent, the Woman clearly obsessed with whatever fate awaits her while the Attendant seeks to comfort or forestall her mistress. The two dancers were simply engrossing to behold: Miki often in rapid, complex combinations moving swiftly about the stage while Katherine deployed her uncanny extension with mind-boggling expressiveness.
In the end, Miki steps out of her rich gown and is revealed in virginal white; the Attendant withdraws and the Woman, taking up a black veil, contemplates her destiny. Mysterious, and all the more powerful for the unanswered questions it raises, Hérodiade is breath-taking.
The Graham Company will offer another studio series from January 21st - 23rd, 2014, with a performance and discussion of the 1947 masterpiece Cave of the Heart, a collaboration between Martha Graham, Samuel Barber, and Isamu Nogichi.
The Graham Company will be at New York's City Center from March 19th - 22nd, 2014 with Graham classics Appalachian Spring, The Rite of Spring, a one-act presentatiom of Clytemnestra, and Maple Leaf Rag. Ever-questing to expand their repertoire, new works by Andonis Foniadakis and Nacho Duato will also be seen. Information here. (The above photo of Katherine Crockett as Clytemnestra by Hibbard Nash).
The Company are currently in the midst of a Kickstarter campaign in support of the Nacho Duato creation. Your support for this will be appreciated: go here to donate.
November 21, 2013 | Permalink
Above: clarinet virtuoso David Shifrin
Tuesday November 19th, 2013 - A delightful programme of music celebrating the clarinet was featured at Chamber Music Society of Lincoln Center. The Society gathered a distinctive ensemble of artists tonight, among them one of my favorite singers, mezzo-soprano Sasha Cooke. This week I have the pleasure of experiencing Sasha's artistry twice, for she follows up tonight's chamber evening with performances of Britten's Spring Symphony with the New York Philharmonic.
The Society's Wu Han greeted us with irrepressible, energetic charm; she explained that she had left the evening's programming up to Mr. Shifrin and then turned the stage over to the musicians. A packed house seemed eager to hear everything that was offered: again, CMS is the place to be for serious music-lovers.
The evening commenced with an unusual Mozart adagio for two clarinets and three basset horns (K. 411) which the composer purportedly arranged as a sort of entree for the members of the Masonic lodge which he had joined in 1784. The piece is brief, with organ-like sonorities.
Above: Sasha Cooke, photo by Rikki Cooke
In the splendid aria "Parto, parto..." from Mozart's penultimate opera, LA CLEMENZA DI TITO, Sasha Cooke's timbre seems to have taken on an added richness since I last heard her. The singer's expressive qualities were, as ever, to the fore, and the power and beauty of her interpretation made me long to hear her at The Met again where lesser artists hold forth in roles that would suit Ms. Cooke to perfection. Be that as it may, her singing of the aria tonight, graced by Mr. Shifrin's polished roulades, was a thoroughly engrossing musico-dramatic experience. The Opus One Piano Quartet's first-rate playing of this chamber arrangement was an ideal compliment to the singer and clarinetist.
Leaping forward from the 18th century to the 21st, Sasha Cooke displayed her versatility in the New York premiere performance of Lowell Liebermann's Four Seasons. In setting poems by Edna St. Vincent Millay, the composer seems to me to have crafted a contemporary masterpiece: his highly evocative, coloristic writing summons visions of the changing seasons with spine-tingling textures. There are several remarkable passages - the transition from Spring to Summer was especially marvelous - and the composer set The Death of Autumn twice, with the singer's poetic response to the text varying in mood between the two. A chilly misterioso motif depicts swirls of snowflakes at the singer intones the beautiful 'What lips my lips have kissed' and the work closes with the poignant recollection of lost love: 'But you were something more than young and sweet and fair - and the long year remenbers you'.
Sasha Cooke, with her gift for communicating not just words but emotions, gave a sublime performance of this fascinating new work; Mr. Shifrin and the musicians of Opus One - Anne-Marie McDermott, Ida Kavafian, Steven Tenenbom and Peter Wiley - produced a glowing soundscape in which the voice was heard in all its affecting radiance.
Following the intermission, Stravinsky's Berceuses du chat were performed by Ms. Cooke and three clarinetists: Mr. Shifrin, Romie De Guise-Langlois, and Ashley William Smith. These wryly charming lullabies were sung with soulful 'Russian' tone by the delightful Sasha.
The evening's second New York premiere, Christopher Theofanidis' Quasi una fantasia is dedicated to Mr. Shifrin and was performed by him and fellow-clarinetist Chad Burrow, with the Opus One Quartet. Facing one another, the two clarinets engage in a musical conversation and sometimes blend in duet; the ensemble provide commentary and pulsing rhythmic motifs.
Sasha Cooke's lovely rendering of four contrasting Mendelssohn lieder - accompanied by Ms. McDermott - was followed by the composer's melodious Concertpiece No. #1 which was lovingly played by Mr. Shifrin with Mlles. De Guise-Langlois (on Basset horn) and McDermott at the Steinway.
A rarity, Ponchielli's Il Convegno (The Meeting), which featured Mr. Shifrin and Miss De Guise-Langlois in a gentle virtuoso dialogue backed by the ensemble, ended the evening. All was well - and beautifully played, of course - though I did feel that the Mendelssohn and Ponchielli were too similar in mood to be played back-to-back. I think interjecting the Stravinsky songs after the Mendelssohn Concertpiece might have set the two ensemble pieces in higher relief.
November 20, 2013 | Permalink