LPO/Sinaisky, Queen Elizabeth Hall, London
Sunday 30 October 2005
Notwithstanding acoustics that sniff haughtily and turn away in a huff whenever the dynamic rises above mezzo forte, there is something to be said for the intimacy of the Queen Elizabeth Hall. Furthermore, as the LPO proved on Wedsnesday night, its new residents are quickly learning to accomodate its indiosyncracies.
With reduced strings, careful phrasing, and judicious distancing of the brass, Dvorak's Cello Concerto proved ideal for the smaller hall. Pieter Wispelway's solo was grainy, athletic, elegantly argued, pristine in its tuning, and pleasingly interrogative of his accompaniment. But, gosh, it is better keep one's eyes closed while he plays. Last time I saw expressions like those on Wispelway's face was on Discovery Health's Maternity Ward. Conductor Vassily Sinaisky, who would have been forgiven for leaving the podium and pacing up and down with a cigar, was by contrast a model of serenity.
By happy accident or percipient planning, Glinka's Capriccio brillante and Tchaikovsky's Third Symphony highlighted the section least favoured by these acoustics: the woodwind. The voluptuous vibrato of flautist Susan Thomas was a little rich for my taste, but her expressivity and focus, along with that of oboist Ian Hardwick, clarinettist Robert Hill, and bassoonist Simon Estell, was indefatigable.
With smart, direct playing from the trumpets, a suave sound from the trombones and horns, and some exceptionally tight and cultured work from the LPO's excellent strings, this was a very impressive performance; beautifully shaped and galvanised by Sinaisky.
TV reviewBroadcasting House was preparing for a visit from Prince Charles spoiler alert
Glastonbury Michael Eavis reveals final headline act 'most likely' British pair
Film Ewan McGregor joins star-studded Beauty and the Beast cast as Lumiere
TVThe Island with Bear Grylls under fire after male contestants kill and eat rare crocodile
Grace Dent on TV The Secret Life of the Pub is sexist, ageist and a breath of fresh air
Arts & Ents blogs
- 1 I've been called an abusive and dangerous parent, when all I did was listen to my transgender child
- 2 Migrant crisis: Greek soldier saved 20 people singlehandedly off Rhodes beach
- 3 Sofyen Belamouadden murder: The inside story of a crime that horrified Britain
- 4 Company breaks open Apple Watch to discover what it says is 'planned obsolescence'
- 5 UK weather: Britain braced for snow as arctic air mass moves in
Broadchurch series 3: David Tennant and Olivia Colman to return for third season, ITV confirms
Poldark, series 1 finale, review: How a costume drama became a Sunday night swoon-fest
Al Pacino admits he was nearly fired from The Godfather and it's still his most 'difficult role'
Warner Music owner Len Blavatnik tops Sunday Times Rich List
Game of Thrones season 5 episode 3, review: Sansa and manhood-lopping torturer Ramsay Bolton - really?
General Election 2015: Chuka Umunna on the benefits of immigration, humility – and his leader Ed Miliband
The sickening truth about food banks that the Tories don't want you to know
Migrant boat disaster: Ukip candidate mocks victims in sickening Twitter post
Nigel Farage wants the BBC to stop making programmes like Doctor Who, Strictly Come Dancing, and Top Gear
Global warming: Scientists say temperatures could rise by 6C by 2100 and call for action ahead of UN meeting in Paris
General Election 2015: Britain would become a 'communist dictatorship' under Ed Miliband and Nicola Sturgeon, claims wife of Michael Gove