Last autumn Helene Grimaud released a fine recording of Brahms’ piano concertos under the baton of Andris Nelsons: to hear them perform the second concerto live with the Philharmonia Orchestra was to realise anew what a superb symbiosis they can achieve.
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Tuesday 13 November 2012
Private patronage was always the trigger for the composition of classical music, and it’s good to know the system is still alive and well: George Law decided to celebrate his 80th birthday by commissioning a piano quintet from Jonathan Dove.
Saturday 13 October 2012
Cellist Sol Gabetta's playing, according to pianist Hélène Grimaud, is characterised by the “light and warmth and vitality” indicated by her first name, qualities not often associated with the instrument.
Sunday 07 October 2012
An innovative new production of Handel's opera is not so much a love story as a gory girl-power revenge tragedy, but the musicianship is sublime
Saturday 29 September 2012
Wednesday 11 April 2012
Two groups of Japanese musicians have opened their Western counterparts’ eyes to new things about Western classical music: one is Masaaki Suzuki with his Bach Collegium Japan, the other is the Tokyo String Quartet, whose recordings of the classical canon are surpassingly fine. And when you’re told before the first of the Tokyo’s two Wigmore concerts that two players are about to retire, you listen intently, because a 42-year run is coming to a close.
Monday 13 February 2012
The American pianist Richard Goode doesn’t give many recitals, but his uniquely personal vision ensures that each one is special.
Sunday 15 January 2012
Emerging musicians get a welcome platform, but please change the record
Friday 13 January 2012
An unknown work by the composer Johannes Brahms has come to light after almost 160 years following its chance discovery in a visitor's book, and will be played for the first time next week.
Sunday 08 January 2012
Dance is the dominant theme in clarinettist Martin Fröst's eclectic recital with the Australian Chamber Orchestra.
Wednesday 04 January 2012
Great pianists often gravitate to chamber music in their maturity, as though the satisfactions of communal music-making finally outweigh the thrills of solo achievement.
Monday 07 November 2011
Brahms's Double Concerto in A minor for Violin and Cello was in its day a very unfashionable form, since concertos were expected to pit a lone soloist against the massed forces of an orchestra. But its intimate dialogue had a suitably intimate inspiration.
Friday 07 October 2011
From John Dowland to Led Zeppelin, JS Bach to Robert Johnson, critic Alex Ross spans many octaves without any sign of strain.
Wednesday 24 August 2011
The hall was packed for the coming-together of Bernard Haitink and Emanuel Ax, two of the most seasoned maestri in the business, to deliver Brahms. But before ‘Piano Concerto No 1’, the great Dutch conductor and the Chamber Orchestra of Europe gave us Brahms’s ‘Symphony No 3’, prefaced by an illuminating programme-interview.
Tuesday 26 July 2011
Can it really be true that Purcell’s ‘Fantasia No 6 in F major’ has never before been played at a Prom?
Monday 18 July 2011
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