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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Album review: Tugan Sokhiev, Orchestre National du Capitole de Toulouse, Stravinsky: The Firebird, The Rite of Spring (Naïve)
Saturday 12 January 2013
Scandalous in its early performances, the stylised primitivism of Stravinsky's Rite of Spring can these days sound merely rumbustious – unless attacked with the youthful gusto of a Dudamel, whose 2010 interpretation with the Simon Bolivar Youth Orchestra restored some of its pagan spirit.
Thursday 10 January 2013
Sir Simon Rattle has announced that he will leave the coveted role of conducting the Berlin Philharmonic Orchestra amid rumours of a “simmering rebellion” among the world’s finest, and fiercest, players.
Wednesday 09 January 2013
Naval vessel impounded for two and half months returns to triumphant homecoming
Sunday 30 December 2012
From the slow heartbeat of Richard Tunnicliffe's Bach Cello Suites, to the quicksilver figures of Carole Cerasi's Scarlatti Sonatas, this was a great year for imagination and invention.
Saturday 29 December 2012
Though by no means an inveterate traditionalist, I admit to regarding televised opera with some suspicion until recently.
Saturday 22 December 2012
Tracey Thorn takes a wider brief than usual for her Christmas Album Tinsel & Lights, mostly avoiding the routine carols and standards in favour of left-field choices from writers like Stephin Merritt, Sufjan Stevens and Low, the wonderfully oblique melody of whose "Taking Down the Tree" affords a lovely duet with Green Gartside of Scritti Politti. Gartside's own "Snow in Sun" is another highlight, cleverly paired with Randy Newman's "Snow".
Wednesday 19 December 2012
Brian Conley goes from the I'm A Celebrity... jungle to a Caribbean island in Birmingham
Friday 14 December 2012
As a gift to the Messiahed-out, William Christie and his Arts Florissants offered Handel’s majestic oratorio on the Bible story which furnished our phrase ‘the writing on the wall’.
Friday 07 December 2012
He was a gifted cellist, and his work remained rooted in the practicalities of performance
Tuesday 04 December 2012
It was pure serendipity that Jocelyn Pook’s "Hearing Voices" for mezzo-soprano, recorded voices, and orchestra should chime so neatly with the debate which has suddenly broken out - not least in this newspaper - about how society treats mental illness.
Friday 30 November 2012
Devoting a series of concerts to the works of that celebrated mutual-admiration society Benjamin Britten and Dmitri Shostakovich, conductor Kiril Karabits, violinist James Ehnes, and the Bournemouth Symphony Orchestra are onto a good thing.
Thursday 29 November 2012
Introducing the first of two concerts celebrating the indomitability of the human spirit, Vladimir Jurowski enjoined us to listen to its five works as five movements of a single one.
IoS classical review: Carmen, Coliseum, London
Huddersfield Contemporary Music Festival, Huddersfield
Sunday 25 November 2012
Intense, lean, witty and stripped of cliché: a 'Carmen' worth the wait
Saturday 24 November 2012
As reinventions go, this is unexpected: Roxy Music's futurist pop re-recorded as Dixieland jazz instrumentals by Bryan Ferry himself.
Saturday 24 November 2012
Most top orchestras have many more men than women in their ranks. Miranda Kiek looks at what could be done to improve the mix.
'We would evict Queen from Buckingham Palace and allocate her council house,' say Greens
French court convicts three over homophobic tweets, in case hailed as a 'significant victory' by LGBT rights campaigners
Greece elections: Syriza and EU on collision course after election win for left-wing party
British Muslim school children suffering a backlash of abuse following Paris attacks
Islamic history is full of free thinkers - but recent attempts to suppress critical thought are verging on the absurd
Leaked documents show Ukip leaders approve NHS privatisation once it becomes more 'acceptable to the electorate'
- 1 The BBC has just done more to eradicate ‘terrorism’ than all our wars since 9/11
- 2 Dog thinks owner is drowning in lake, dives in and tries to pull him out
- 4 Chilling drone footage captures Auschwitz ahead of 70th anniversary of liberation