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Folle Journée in Nantes : the exquisite hour of French and Spanish music

This year, the theme was “L’heure exquise,” celebrating French and Spanish music from 1850 to the present. In that context, a great tribute was paid to the golden era of French music from the 1870s through the 1940s. Along with the most famous composers, such as Debussy, Ravel, Bizet, Albéniz, Falla, and Messiaen, the audience was given the opportunity to discover composers who until now have remained very little known, ...
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Riccardo Chailly: Happy Birthday, Maestro!

ResMusica: Maestro Chailly, you can choose not to answer this first question : Will you be a candidate to replace Sir Simon Rattle in Berlin in 2018? Riccardo Chailly: Obviously I cannot answer this. Only fate and the Berlin Philharmonic will tell. RM: You will be turning sixty this year. You have conducted all the repertoire, from Bach to contemporary music, with all the greatest orchestras. Are there works that you have ...
Alisa Weilerstein -  (c) Decca / Harald Hoffmann

Alisa Weilerstein in Paris

"The programming is conservative and stuck" ResMusica: Your debut album features the concerto by Elgar, whose discography has been dominated by Jacqueline Du Pré since she recorded it in 1965. Daniel Barenboim made an emblematic recording with her in the mid-70’s. How did this album happen? Alisa Weilerstein: Playing this concerto with Maestro Barenboim was not something I asked myself. When I met with Barenboim for the first time, it was ...
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Staggering Médée by Krzysztof Warlikowski

This DVD featuring Médée provides the  music lover with the opportunity to watch Christophe Rousset and director Krzysztof Warlikowski’s memorable production of Cherubini’s masterpiece. First given at La Monnaie in Brussels in 2008, this opera returned in September 2011 before being presented in Paris at the Théâtre des Champs-Elysées in December 2012. First, we must applaud the appropriate choice of using the French version of the opera, including the spoken ...
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Gergiev kicks off the complete Shostakovich’s symphonies in Paris

Valery Gergiev has returned to the marathon concert format that he first put together for the 2010-2011 season—back then it was for Mahler's complete orchestral works— this time with a series of all of Shostakovitch's concertos and symphonies over two seasons and eight concerts. The first two of those consisted of the alpha and omega of the symphonic corpus, with, sandwiched in between, the Piano Concerto no. 2 on the ...
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Louis Langrée conducts the Berlin Philharmonic

For any conductor, being invited by the Berlin Philharmonic Orchestra for a concert in its own hall, in a subscription concert is always a feat which made you part for to an exclusive club, a Champion’s League, so to speak. If French conductors have always been highly on demand abroad (while they struggle to find adequate positions in their home country) few have made it to the podium of this ...
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Don Quixote rejuvenated

José Montalvo is back as a full-fledged choreographer now that he has left his job as director of the Théâtre de Chaillot and his “partner” Dominique Hervieu. His latest creation, a refreshing, daring vision of Don Quixote of la Mancha, after a ballet by Ludwig Minkus, originally choreographed by Marius Petipa, proves it. Montalvo had the smart idea to choose Patrice Thibaud as Don Quixote, the penniless hidalgo who fights against ...
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Mariss Jansons makes the Turangalîla-Symphonie his own

If there was ever a concert distinguished by the originality of its program and the quality of its interpreters, it was surely this one. It featured the vast, if not overwhelming, Olivier Messiaen’s symphony played by a Bavarian orchestra with Wagnerian sonorities rather than the typically French style of the composer, under the baton of a first-class conductor whose vision of Messiaen's work could only sharpen music lovers' curiosity. Right from ...
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Christian Lindberg : Pettersson is gigantic !

On November 25, on a famous social network, Christian Lindberg wrote: «Having lived now for 6 months with Pettersson´s 9th symphony I am SO MUCH looking forwards to start the work with the orchestra tomorrow! Pettersson gets under your skin, and You actually feel his pain working with his music. So why do we love him so much?? HE SPOKE OUT MUSICALLY ABOUT HUMAN DISPAIR! And in some strange way, ...
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Gens and Axelrod rediscover Berlioz and Ravel

Those scores have a mesmerizing beauty but demand a very high technical and musical level. Hence, their discography is quantitatively massive but qualitatively very (very) poor. The tone of the solists cannot always seduce the listener into forgetting clumsy diction, misreading of the text or ignorance of the stylistic rules of prosody. In this context, the legendary version of Crespin and Ansermet (Decca) of Les Nuits d’été and Shéhérazade is ...
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Interview with Tasmin Little on Delius anniversary

ResMusica : You have been among the few musicians championing the music of Frederick Delius throughout their career. You play it on stage regularly and lastly at the Prom’s, you recorded with EMI and Chandos, or by discussing it on the BBC. Have you seen a change in how this music is perceived and received by the audience, in the UK and abroad ? Tasmin Little : I do think that ...
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In Montpellier, a tribute to Elliott Carter

When Jean-Paul Scarpitta decided to produce at the Corum of Montpellier the French premiere of What Next? by Elliott Carter, the only work by the American composer for the stage, and for only two performances, he could not guess he was about to give the best tribute to the American composer, who died on 5th November at 103 years old. The condensed format of this chamber opera (45 minutes) called for ...
Anna Caterina Antonacci et Nikolai Schukoff  © Charles Duprat/Opéra national

A disappointing Carmen at the Paris Opera

Carmen last production at the Paris Opera dates back to 1997 (performed until 2002), which explains the high expectations for this new production entrusted to the (mostly theater) director Yves Beaunesne. Sold out until the end of 2012, this opera by Bizet is shown in the version with dialogues; the libretto having nevertheless been adapted by the playwright Marion Bernède. In a unique and quite colorless set (a warehouse), Yves Beaunesne chose ...
 

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