Violin and music

Violin and music

Concert Reviews

Schubert/Mahler - Bernard Haitink/Camilla Tilling

Sat 16 Aug 2014, Royal Albert Hall, London

Financial Times, 18 Aug 2014
Their Mahler, a rapt performance of the Symphony No. 4, was as fresh and welcome as a blue sky on a spring morning.
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London Evening Standard, 18 Aug 2014
Indeed, there are other ways to present both these works — emphasising the tensions, highlighting their inner drama. Yet Haitink’s unforced readings are delivered with such integrity that at that moment they seem to be the right and only way.
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Haitink, who can make silence speak as eloquently as sound, created an exquisite, unhurried flow.
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The Times, 18 Aug 2014
His interpretation of the Fourth Symphony with the London Symphony Orchestra was stunning: mostly beguilingly gentle and unhurried, but with a profusion of subtle nuances and an utterly persuasive ebb and flow.
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The Guardian, 17 Aug 2014
With the LSO audibly relishing the chance of playing with a conductor who cares about getting everything right and about making fine distinctions in the dynamics and attacks, this was a performance of fascinating detail.
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MusicOMH, 17 Aug 2014
All sections of the LSO played magnificently – the fact that they enjoy working with Haitink was evident in every bar, and they rewarded him with some of the finest playing I’ve heard all year.
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Classical Source, 16 Aug 2014
Haitink sculptured a perfectly proportioned account of this charming, soulful and invigorating Symphony, the LSO responding with clarity, style, gentleness and warmth.
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Brahms/Janacek - Valery Gergiev/Barry Douglas

Thu 24 Jul 2014, Royal Albert Hall, London

The Observer, 26 Jul 2014
Together with the LSO Chorus, the players let rip magnificently in Janáček's Glagolitic Mass.Together with the LSO Chorus, the players let rip magnificently in Janáček's Glagolitic Mass.
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The Guardian, 25 Jul 2014
The LSO played magnificently, as one would expect
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Classical Iconoclast, 25 Jul 2014
Those powerful, pounding brasses, the upward, thrusting rhythms, cascading rivulets of sound sparkling like light through the giant trees in the forest, the chorus intoxicated by faith.
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Classical Source, 24 Jul 2014
Certainly this vibrant, brass-blazing... timpani pounding and vocally scintillating performance under Gergiev at his most persuasive made – for an instant, at least – the best possible case for Paul Wingfield’s edition.
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Beethoven - Myung-Whun Chung

Tue 15 Jul 2014, St Paul's Cathedral, London

The Guardian, 17 Jul 2014
...strong playing from the LSO, sumptuous singing from the London Symphony Chorus, and a fine quartet of Korean soloists led by the excellent Kathleen Kim, whose voice cut through the aural fog around her like a laser.
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Classical Source, 15 Jul 2014
Chung initiated a slow-burn intensity in the Adagio from a notably serene opening to its powerful anticipation of greater things to come that fed into the finale.
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Penderecki/Bruckner - Daniel Harding

Thu 3 Jul 2014, St Paul's Cathedral, London

Financial Times, 6 Jul 2014
The massive climaxes thundered; the long, slow melodies rolled around the cathedral as though time was of no matter to them. Whenever he reached one of Bruckner’s (many) dramatic silences, Harding thoughtfully held on for an age until the last echo of the chord before had finally rumbled out of earshot.
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London Evening Standard, 4 Jul 2014
If the closing Adagio didn’t disperse the acoustic haze, Harding allowed it to build with grace: the music was not outfaced by the building in which it unfolded.
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Bachtrack, 4 Jul 2014
The inexorable progression to the final apocalyptic climax was perfectly judged and for the first time the music seemed bigger than its surroundings. Particularly beautiful woodwind solos pierced the bed of strings and very haunting they were too.
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Classical Source, 4 Jul 2014
Harding drew from the LSO’s strings a tender, even luscious, manner with the major-key second subject, more so than anything previously hinted at in the Penderecki.
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Beethoven/Messiaen - Jonathan Nott/Steven Osborne/Cynthia Millar

Sun 29 Jun 2014

Bachtrack, 1 Jul 2014
Jonathan Nott and the London Symphony Orchestra delivered an energetic, precise and intense performance of Beethoven and Messiaen... The LSO’s prominent brass and percussion sections were absolutely outstanding in their performance, and the entire orchestra was on fine form.
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The Guardian, 1 Jul 2014
This was Nott's first time with the LSO, and he made the most of it, eliciting an extraordinary finesse and fullness of tone in Beethoven's Second Symphony, which combined impressively with the fast pace and sharply articulated phrasing.
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Classical Source, 1 Jul 2014
Beethoven’s Second Symphony was given an imposing and forcefully projected reading... Both here and then in the Messiaen, Nott’s rapport with the LSO was undoubted.
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The Times, 1 Jul 2014
Razor-sharp articulation, clarity, beautifully poised solos characterised this performance. And a slow movement that seemed composed of one long line of breath.
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Boulezian, 29 Jun 2014
This was a wonderful – in every way – conclusion to the LSO’s season. The final, prolonged, glowing chord sent shivers down the spine.
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Strauss/Beethoven - Fabio Luisi

Sun 22 Jun 2014

Classical Source, 22 Jun
As one would expect from the LSO it was excellently played, the hero striding manfully forth at the outset and with great swathes of string tone in the more voluptuous sections
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Mozart/Bruckner - Fabio Luisi/Lise de la Salle

Thu 19 Jun 2014

Bachtrack, 20 Jun 2014
Luisi conjured a whole shuddering kaleidoscope of death-ridden and celestial visions from the orchestra, who responded with inspired playing.
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Classical Source, 20 Jun 2014
Coherent and completely in step with Bruckner’s visionary quality, this was a performance that only doubled one’s love for this incredible work.
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The Arts Desk, 20 Jun 2014
Luisi and the orchestra turned the scherzo into a zesty Rhine journey at the gallop with terrific uplift from the strings.
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The Guardian, 20 Jun 2014
As for De la Salle... her playing was unfussy, elegant, never drawing unwarranted attention to itself, but at the same time absolutely distinctive.
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Alastair Putt/Bruck/Dvořák - Sir Mark Elder/Nicola Benedetti

Thu 12 Jun 2014

Classical Source, 12 Jun 2014
Benedetti has a strong platform presence... her tone quality was lovely, and she threw off the finale’s fireworks as if they presented no challenge.
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Beethoven - Leonidas Kavakos/Enrico Pace/Tim Hugh

Fri 6 Jun 2014

Classical Source, 6 Jun 2014
The LSO was at its legendary, sumptuous best, with a wrap-around spread of depth and clarity, Kavakos’s rather angular, heavily gestural conducting adding an extra hit of pressure to the pace.
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Beethoven/Henze/Schumann - Sir Simon Rattle/Veronika Eberle/Anna Prohaska

Sun 1 Jun 2014

The Times, 4 Jun 2014
in Schumann’s Symphony No 2 the conductor’s instincts for lean, muscular textures and lithe tempos in early Romantic repertory met the plush playing of the LSO, with infectious results.
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Boulezian, 3 Jun 2014
There was excellent playing from all concerned, whether the burnished strings or the Mozartian wind-band; the horns in particular sounded ravishing.
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Bachtrack, 3 Jun 2014
This was a thrilling concert… electrifying playing, accomplished soloists and a programme that allowed for new discoveries via both familiar and unfamiliar works.
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The Guardian, 3 Jun 2014
Exceptionally delicate dynamics were a hallmark throughout, as both orchestra and soloist spun the first and second movements out into the merest scintillas of sound, which made the closing rondo all the more impressive for being harder won than usual.
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The Arts Desk, 2 Jun 2014
The Larghetto was spacious in the extreme, with several of those trademark Rattle pianissimi, but the breadth of gesture gave the opportunity for Daniel Jemison's glorious bassoon tone to resonate, and the Egmont-like chords at the end of the slow movement were given real passion. Eberle and the LSO brought the light-footedness of chamber music and of dance to the closing rondo movement.
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Classical Source, 2 Jun 2014
Beethoven’s Violin Concerto received a majestic outing. Rattle and the LSO’s accompaniment was consistently ear-grabbing
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Birtwistle/Brahms - Daniel Harding/Paul Lewis

Tue 20 May 2014

Financial Times, 24 May 2014
Lewis was planning a longer game and the finale rose to a lofty conclusion in which pianist and orchestra grew to become equal players.
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The Times, 23 May 2014
And they fluttered from darkness into seering light with such energy that the music hit its audience in the viscera.
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Classical Source, 22 May 2014
Steering a confident and focused course, Harding palpably had its measure and was abetted by an assured response from the LSO.
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The Independent, 21 May 2014
...this work has no extraneous literary connotations: teeming with ideas, it’s about the orchestra itself, and about the dramatic transformations through which its sound can pass.
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London Evening Standard, 21 May 2014
An extraordinary piece, played with slithering sensuality by the London Symphony Orchestra under Daniel Harding.
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Ravel/Prokofiev/Shostakovich - Pablo Heras-Casado

Wed 14 May 2014

The Times, 16 May 2014
This was a feisty yet detailed performance enlivened by a particularly graceful solo from the orchestra's new co-principal bassoon Daniel Jemison.
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Classical Source, 14 May 2014
With lithe and pungent accompaniment, true to LSO family values, Simovic told of tales and painted pictures, his response ranging from intense to ghostly.
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Mozart/Strauss - Sir Mark Elder/Anne Schwanewilms/Sarah Connolly/Lucy Crowe

Thu 8 May 2014

The Times, 12 May 2014
...this performance was all about the LSO, whose stylistic versatility and tonal brilliance were breathtaking.
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The Guardian, 9 May 2014
It was superbly managed from an orchestral point of view, and any other UK ensemble tackling Rosenkavalier in the near future is going to have its work cut out to match it.
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Classical Source, 9 May 2014
Elder showed masterful command of structure by not vulgarising the already ripe harmonic palette but patiently allowing the music to develop its own natural momentum towards its glorious culmination.
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The Arts Desk, 9 May 2014
And as an interpretation, featuring all repeats including the second half of the finale, it had a near-perfect mix of light and shade, space and buoyancy. 
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London Evening Standard, 9 May 2014
All three sopranos gave of their best in the rapturous trio of the Act 3 finale, where Elder’s flawlessly calibrated climax drew magnificent playing from the LSO.
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Bach Track, 9 May 2014
Few orchestras can boast such a resplendent horn sound as the current LSO team, rejoicing through the opening bedroom scene ecstatically.
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Strauss/Mozart - Sir Mark Elder/Imogen Cooper

Sun 4 May 2014

The Guardian, 4 May 2014
... the woodwind was in stupendous form, and in the ­Serenade, the conductor's only role seemed to be one of occasionally ­drawing each player gently back from their reveries and into the fold.
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Classical Source, 4 May 2014
Dripping with atmosphere and suggestion, this reading clearly showed that Elder believes in every note of this 20-minute score
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Boulezian, 4 May 2014
... I should turn to the final work, Till Eulenspiegel. It received a truly outstanding performance; I am not sure that I have heard a better one.
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Strauss/Brahms - Nikolaj Znaider/Roman Simovic/Tim Hugh

Thu 1 May 2014, Barbican

Financial Times, 4 May 2014
This was a lesson in finely blended sound, sensuousness and vitality in which every member of the orchestra was a joyful, committed participant.
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Classical Source, 2 May 2014
The LSO gave a coruscating account of this rich score, and brought vividly to life the moods and zeal that Strauss paints so magnificently.
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Mahler - Daniele Gatti

Sun 27 Apr 2014, Barbican

The Guardian, 28 Apr 2014
The opening movement was always tightly controlled, and the energy Gatti drew from the LSO was remorseless.
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Classical Source, 28 Apr 2014
...every sound was ghoulishly meaningful, the LSO relishing Mahler’s amazing invention and scoring
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Boulezian, 28 Apr 2014
This concert, however, made it clear that the LSO remains a Mahler orchestra to be reckoned with.
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Bach Track, 28 Apr 2014
Gatti has not conducted the LSO for nearly 20 years, all the more astonishing a fact given the assuredness of the performance. At times Gatti was almost stationary on the podium, inviting the orchestra to come to him; in other moments it felt as if he and the orchestra were partners in a dance.
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Pärt/Youssef - Kristjan Järvi/Dhafer Youssef

Thu 24 Apr 2014, Barbican

Jazz Journal, 26 Apr 2014
... the LSO offered both restrained and sumptuous string playing, a range of brass and percussion interjections, and, it must be said, some sustained passages of really spirited ostinato rhythm.
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The Telegraph, 25 Apr 2014
Youssef has a pleasingly clear light voice, just right for the quavering ornaments of Middle Eastern music.
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Scriabin/Chopin/Messiaen - Valery Gergiev/Daniil Trifonov

Sun 13 Apr 2014, Barbican

The Times, 16 Apr 2014
Above all, Trifonov tapped into Chopin’s sense of freedom at the piano, and his joy in its potential.
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The Guardian, 14 Apr 2014
Valery Gergiev's three-concert sweep through the symphonies of Alexander Scriabin has proved to be one of the most rewarding and genuinely revelatory of his recent projects with the London Symphony Orchestra...the quality of the solo wind playing was exceptional.
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The Arts Desk, 14 Apr 2014
...there was plenty to enjoy, and it was performed with great conviction by the LSO and Gergiev, for whom this is clearly of a labour of love.
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Classical Source, 14 Apr 2014
Gergiev had its measure both rigorously and conceptually, binding its cyclical structure yet giving it a certain freedom, to which the LSO responded innately and with impressive character and ensemble.
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Scriabin/Messiaen - Valery Gergiev/Denis Matsuev

Thu 10 Apr 2014, Barbican

Financial Times, 13 Apr 2014
Gergiev was in his element, firing up the musicians in the boisterous outer movements and stressing elegance in the sensuous slow centrepiece. Here was the unadorned Russian soul – apolitical and all-embracing.
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Classical Source, 11 Apr 2014
In lesser hands this kind of composition can fall apart in performance, but Gergiev controlled the disparate rhythms and meters in a masterly fashion, so that the music moved logically and purposefully ahead to its final triumphant resolution.
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Scriabin/Lizst - Valery Gergiev/Denis Matsuev

Sun 30 Mar 2014, Barbican

The Times, 1 Apr 2014
I don’t think I’ve ever seen [Gergiev] smile so much as during and after The Poem of Ecstasy, a work he clearly loves, and whose delicate and dance-like spirit he liberated.
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The Arts Desk, 31 Mar 2014
Gergiev did both works proud, without the slightest trace of apology. These were fine, controlled performances, correctly free in style but never rambling or diffuse, and wonderfully well-played by a full-strength LSO. In both quality and quantity, the sound – orchestral and choral – was terrific. 
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Financial Times, 31 Mar 2014
In this later symphony, with its pre-echoes of Stravinsky’s fairytale score for The Firebird, the combination of high-quality playing and Gergiev’s ability to get the music to pulsate with spontaneity will have won Scriabin new admirers.
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The Guardian, 31 Mar 2014
With Gergiev fully endorsing Matsuev's approach, this was a performance that married a barnstorming manner with real musical distinction.
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Evening Standard, 31 Mar 2014
Gergiev paced the sprawling six-movement structure skilfully, just as he held something in reserve for the cataclysmic conclusion to the Poem of Ecstasy.
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Classical Source, 31 Mar 2014
an impressive demonstration of the LSO’s skill in a work of which it has given numerous fine performances in recent years
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Daily Telegraph, 31 Mar 2014
Deservedly better known, [Poem of Ecstasy] was delivered with voluptuous virtuosity and plenty of decibels.
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Boulezian, 31 Mar 2014
Strings were voluptuous, and the LSO brass excelled itself, not least in Philip Cobb’s excellent, vibrato-laden solos, as ‘Russian’ a sound as one is likely to hear from a non-Russian orchestra.
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Mendelssohn/Schumann - Sir John Eliot Gardiner/Alina Ibragimova

Sun 23 Mar 2014, Barbican

The Times, 26 Mar 2014
It’s debatable whether any other London orchestra, including Gardiner’s Orchestre Romantique et Révolutionnaire, could have delivered the first and fourth movements of the Italian Symphony at this speed with this precision.
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Financial Times, 25 Mar 2014
This most recent concert in John Eliot Gardiner’s series of Mendelssohn and Schumann with the London Symphony Orchestra ... showed how asking a traditional symphony orchestra to play in something approaching period style can send a jolt of electricity through its performances.
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The Guardian, 25 Mar 2014
The LSO players rose to it all – this was no imitation period band, but a modern orchestra responding brilliantly and unapologetically to a famously demanding conductor.
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Evening Standard, 24 Mar 2014
this reading of the Italian exploited the exhilarating athleticism of the first movement and the frenzied Neapolitan dance rhythms of the saltarello finale.
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The Independent, 24 Mar 2014
Alina Ibragimova set out to make the strongest possible case for this missing link. It opens with Handelian grandeur, then settles into a soulful mode for which this young violinist’s expressively lyrical sound was well suited: not big, but very sweet and pure.
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Classical Source, 24 Mar 2014
Gardiner made the finale, a ‘Saltarello’, into a hectic display of virtuosity, admirably realised by the LSO as a whole and the flutes in particular.
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Mendelssohn/Schumann - Sir John Eliot Gardiner/Alina Ibragimova

Sat 22 Mar 2014, G Live Guildford

The Guildford Dragon, 24 Mar 2014
This was romantic orchestral performance at its best, and every section played a vital part – well done the violas! The whole symphony was beautifully shaped and finely phrased, the climactic horns and timpani sending us home with a smile.
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Mendelssohn/Schumann - Sir John Eliot Gardiner/Alina Ibragimova

Fri 21 Mar 2014, Portsmouth Guildhall

The Edge, 26 Mar 2014
The LSO’s performance was breath-taking ... most definitely one of the best concerts of its genre that will be seen all year.
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The News, 24 Mar 2014
Two Mendelssohn symphonies were the popular attraction in the LSO’s long-awaited return to Portsmouth, but the revelation was Schumann’s late and seldom-played Violin Concerto.
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Elgar/Mahler - Daniel Harding/Tim Hugh

Fri 14 Mar 2014, NCPA Mumbai

Financial Chronicle, 27 Mar 2014
It seems like an odd thing to say since we are still only in March, but the recent concerts by the London Symphony Orchestra are likely to be the highlights of the year.
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Rachmaninov/Mahler - Daniel Harding/Yuja Wang

Sat 8 Mar 2014, Hong Kong Cultural Center

South China Morning Post, 11 Mar 2014
The third [movement of Mahler 1] lingered over the beauty of each moment, while the finale's outer sections were played unashamedly white hot, with no holds barred in the brass and percussion. The brazen encore was a medley from John Williams' score for the film Star Wars. An exhilarating evening.
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Huw Watkins/Mahler - Daniel Harding/Adam Walker

Sun 23 Feb 2014, Barbican

Bachtrack, 25 Feb 2014
It was an exhilarating end to a quite brilliant concert.
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The Guardian, 25 Feb 2014
Walker, playing with staggering virtuosity and charm, kept the audience on the edge of their seats throughout, and brought the house down at the end.
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The Times, 25 Feb 2014
...the glitter-bomb finale — horn players on their feet, clarinets and oboes raised like peashooters — was simply thrilling.
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Classical Source, 24 Feb 2014
Adam Walker's playing was miraculous, his tone shifting imperceptibly from seductive roundness to an edgy astringency and adding layers of nuance to Watkins's already thoroughly imagined, translucent writing. Walker literally breathed character into the music, with an effortless, assured virtuosity that played games to great effect with the orchestra, and with Daniel Harding superb in his control of balance and attack.
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Evening Standard, 24 Feb 2014
Flute concertos don’t come along every day, and it’s a measure of the depth of LSO talent that it could pluck a player from its own woodwind section to take the solo part in Huw Watkins’s new Flute Concerto. Watkins is not afraid of either melody or drama, and Adam Walker seemed up for every challenge thrown at him.
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The Independent, 24 Feb 2014
Under Daniel Harding’s direction the London Symphony Orchestra cast a matching spell, at one point answering the flute’s busy monologue with a ravishing blend of high strings, woodwind, and harp.
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Rachmaninov/Stravinsky - Daniel Harding/Yuja Wang

Thu 20 Feb 2014, Barbican

Classical Source, 21 Feb 2014
The LSO responded brilliantly to [Daniel Harding's] clear, precise direction, and the dramatic ending of the ballet, where Petrushka’s ghost appears, was quite chilling, even though there was no stage action to see.
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Yuja Wang solo recital

Sun 16 Feb 2014, Barbican

Seen and Heard, 20 Feb 2014
The ultra-gestural second piece was perfectly judged, while the finale held its share of surprises, not least the post-Debussian haze of its opening. The technique, again, was jaw-droppingly good, in fact in places improbable.
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The Guardian, 18 Feb 2014
Of her fabulous technique there can be no doubt, nor of the weight of sound she can conjure from a piano. The control is sometimes breathtaking. And she also has the tender touch in her fingers, conjuring sounds of deliquescent beauty from the keyboard when she chooses.
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Debussy/Prokofiev/Ravel - James Gaffigan/Yuja Wang

Thu 13 Feb 2014, Barbican

Classical Source, 14 Feb 2014
[Yuja Wang] sailed through the brief scherzo with nonchalant brilliance, and her pungent account of the march-like third movement was succeeded by a finale that once more showed a combination of sensitivity and brilliance. Throughout, Gaffigan and the LSO were ideal, expert partners.
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Beethoven/Rachmaninov - Jaap Van Zweden/Yuja Wang

Sun 9 Feb 2014, Barbican

The Guardian, 11 Feb 2014
The climax of the introduction was big enough to be the climax of a whole symphony – how could van Zweden keep up the energy? But he did: drawing the music into huge arcs and keeping momentum fierce, he paced things superbly.
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Financial Times, 11 Feb 2014
It was only in the finale that the dextrous fingers also found a characterful sparkle and humour. The closing rush to the end was quite exhilarating.
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Classical Source, 10 Feb 2014
Here was a reading – most notably in the wonderfully grasped and played slow movement – that was remarkably fine throughout, especially in Chris Richards’s long clarinet solo, and the manner by which van Zweden built the finale was enormously impressive and undeniably thrilling.
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Panufnik/Dvorák - Michael Francis/Anne-Sophie Mutter

Wed 5 Feb 2014, Barbican

The Times, 7 Feb 2014
Hearing two of [Panufnik's] most skilfully constructed works, vividly performed by the London Symphony Orchestra under the baton of Michael Francis, afresh was something of a revelation.
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Daily Telegraph, 6 Feb 2014
Fittingly, the LSO was in charge of officially launching this year’s Panufnik centenary celebrations...It did so impressively
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The Guardian, 6 Feb 2014
Among the most remarkable and original of Panufnik's scores, [Lullaby] was exquisitely done – a perfect performance. 
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Financial Times, 6 Feb 2014
Can the slow movement [of Dvorak's Violin Concerto] ever have been played with a tone so tender and withdrawn, as though revealing some long-lost romantic secret? Mutter remains a truly first-class draw.
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Bachtrack, 7 Feb 2014
The LSO captured [Panufnik's Lullaby's] haunting, broken-music-box quality, sounding at once totally contemporary and like a child’s lullaby. Aside from a few slightly heavy moments in the solo melody instruments, the deft performance was utterly entrancing.
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Elgar/Britten/Maxwell Davies - Sir Antonio Pappano/Maxim Vengerov/Markus Butter/LSC

Sun 2 Feb 2014, Barbican

The Sunday Times, 9 Feb 2014
In the new symphony, Davies turns baroque architecture into bloody narrative with an unmistakeable personal twist.
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The Observer, 9 Feb 2014
Creativity, mortality and renewal: this was the collective message that imprinted itself on our hearts as Max took his bow and beamed at his cheering audience.Creativity, mortality and renewal: this was the collective message that imprinted itself on our hearts as Max took his bow and beamed at his cheering audience.
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Finacial Times, 7 Feb 2014
Davies was visibly moved at the end of the performance, which had the buzz of a big musical occasion – not least because it found the London Symphony Orchestra and Chorus on superlative form and the conductor Antonio Pappano at his most inspirational.
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New York Times, 4 Feb 2014
... this work turns on its head the old trope about architecture being frozen music. Here is music functioning as liquid architecture: monumental, certainly, but lightened by a grace and brilliance worthy of the buildings that inspired it.
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Classical Source, 4 Feb 2014
Not since Tippett has British music had a choral work comparable in its combining of innovation with experience.
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The Times, 4 Feb 2013
The LSO offered plenty of variegated colours. Brass burbled in their boots; the marimba chortled; strings massed lyrically.
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Daily Telegraph, 3 Feb 2014
conductor Antonio Pappano had led a fabulously full-blooded yet crystal-clear performance of Elgar’s Alassio: In the South.
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The Guardian, 3 Feb 2014
It's one of the most movingly personal of Davies's recent scores, and a major new symphony.
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Evening Standard, 3 Feb 2014
In music that is neither ancient nor modern, the symphony unfolds at a steady pace, incrementally building a carefully controlled tension so that the closing moments feel like a genuine release. The audience, liberally sprinkled with composers, responded with warm enthusiasm.
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The Arts Desk, 3 Feb 2014
Pappano and the LSO shone in a very well rehearsed performance of this substantial and complex new work.
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Maxwell Davies/Brahms/Walton - Sir Antonio Pappano/Janine Jansen/LSO On Track

Thu 30 Jan 2014, Barbican

MusicOMH, 1 Feb 2014
After the interval, the orchestra’s performance of Walton’s Symphony No. 1 in B-flat minor saw Pappano demonstrate a deep understanding of the mechanics of, and nuances in, the symphony, without ever losing sight of the work’s expansive elements.
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Bachtrack, 1 Feb 2014
Jansen seemed in a trance throughout, listening deeply to the orchestra when not playing; the orchestra, for their part, could hardly have been more alert, or indeed more thoroughly Brahmsian in the sound they produced, playing with extreme strength and depth that was somehow never overblown.
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Evening Standard, 31 Jan 2014
...the finale soared like a film score, reaching its climax with a confident swagger. Pappano and his players delivered a performance of wide-screen magnificence.
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The Arts Desk , 31 Jan 2014
...if certain pages already seemed to yearn for Walton’s eventual haven in Ischia in the Bay of Naples the “last post” trumpet solo immediately prior to the blazing coda of the finale - beautifully played with a gently nostalgic vibrato by Philip Cobb - surely belonged to Oldham, Lancashire, Walton’s home town. Great piece, great performance.
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Classical Source, 31 Jan 2014
It’s not often that a loud ending is greeted by stunned silence, cued here by a statuesque Pappano, but that’s what happened initially – testimony to another triumph for Antonio Pappano and the LSO.
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Mendelssohn/Schumann - Sir John Eliot Gardiner/Maria João Pires

Tue 21 Jan 2014, Barbican

The Times, 23 Jan 2014
This was the London Symphony Orchestra; but, with violins and violas all standing, and with a new suppleness and brilliance in their voice, they sounded both Romantic and revolutionary.
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Evening Standard, 22 Jan 2014
The deep-hued textures of the symphony (four horns, prominent violas and cellos) were offset by robust upper strings, their visceral attack enhanced by having the players standing.
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Classical Source, 22 Jan 2014
You take the LSO’s responsive style for granted, but the subtlety of colour and expression were in another league, entirely at the disposal of what is in effect a tone-poem. 
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Haydn The Creation - Richard Egarr et al

Sun 12 Jan 2014, Barbican

Financial Times, 15 Jan 2014
The best feature was the freedom Egarr gave the LSO’s wind section to shine, especially the three flutes and Andrew Marriner’s clarinet.
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The Guardian, 14 Jan 2014
As one would expect from such an orchestra and chorus, there was plenty of thump and oomph in the large moments, but it was consistently matched with delicate vocal and instrumental shading and detail elsewhere.
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The Times, 14 Jan 2014
Vivid details continued as Haydn’s oratorio pressed ahead on streamlined modern instruments. Avian flutes chortled with character. No blandness, either, in the brass’s roaring lion and the footfall of “heavy beasts”. And Gerald Finley’s vocal menagerie couldn’t have been more piquant, with its bleating sheep, slithering worms and creepy-crawly insects.
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Rimsky-Korsakov/Tchaikovsky/Prokofiev - Michael Tilson Thomas/Evgeny Kissin

Thu 19 Dec 2013, Barbican

Classical Source, 20 Dec 2013
The finale, playful and carefree until the mechanisms of the coda that seem to warn as much as power the Symphony to its insistent conclusion, continued to find the LSO and MTT on ‘old friends’ top form; and, boy, they really nailed the final chord with formidable togetherness.
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The Independent, 20 Dec 2013
[Kissin's] approach at the Barbican to that most hackneyed of piano concertos, Tchaikovsky’s first, was typical, avoiding the usual schmaltz of the opening through the sheer perfection of his sound, delivering the virtuoso passage-work with lightness and precision, investing the start of the cadenza with Chopinesque delicacy, and answering the orchestra’s staccato entry in the slow movement with a pearlised staccato of his own.
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Rimsky-Korsakov/Tchaikovsky/Prokofiev - Michael Tilson Thomas/Evgeny Kissin

Wed 18 Dec 2013, Symphony Hall Birmingham

Birmingham Post, 2 Jan 2014
Veteran conductor Michael Tilson Thomas, a fine exponent of Tchaikovsky, and the LSO (groomed by Valery Gergiev) sounded as authentically Russian as anything from St Petersburg.
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Liszt/Prokofiev/Tchaikovsky - Michael Tilson Thomas/Simon Trpceski

Thu 12 Dec 2013, Barbican

The Guardian, 15 Dec 2013
This was a big, daringly stark reading, with the dynamics dramatically well disciplined and the climaxes allowed to build steadily to an almost unbearable tension. The LSO, as so often with Tilson Thomas, were on their best form.
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The Independent, 13 Dec 2013
And under Michael Tilson Thomas’s direction the London Symphony Orchestra responded adroitly to [Simon Trpceski's] challenge, in the Andante providing ethereal textures over which he laid leisurely figurations, and in the crazy finale allowing him to let rip while maintaining steely technical control.
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Classical Source, 13 Dec 2013
The finale was strongly delivered and exhilarating. I cannot think of anybody who could have surpassed the performance that Michael Tilson Thomas gave us.
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Beethoven/Dvorák - Nikolaj Znaider

Thu 5 Dec 2013, Barbican

Classical Source, 6 Dec 2013
Once the slightly tentative account of the opening pages passed, the musical narrative took off and Znaider led the LSO through a notably rousing development and climax to the recapitulation in the first movement.
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LSO On Film: The Music of Patrick Doyle

Sun 1 Dec 2013, Barbican

Cineworld, 2 Dec 2013
Derek Jacobi received a standing ovation for his forceful delivery of 'My Thoughts Be Bloody' from Hamlet, his rich tones lent additional power by the portentous, powerful orchestra. On a more tender note, Thompson was reduced to tears by Doyle's solo violin piece 'Corarsik' (making its UK concert debut) – composed specially for the actress' 50th birthday.
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Event Calendar

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