WGBH Radio WGBH Radio theclassicalstation.org

Dances & Dreams - Gala Concert From Berlin 2011 [blu-ray]

Dvorak / Berliner Philharmoniker / Kissin
Release Date: 09/25/2012 
Label:  Euroarts   Catalog #: 2058724  
Composer:  Johannes BrahmsAntonín DvorákEdvard GriegMaurice Ravel,   ... 
Performer:  Evgeni Kissin
Conductor:  Simon Rattle
Orchestra/Ensemble:  Berlin Philharmonic Orchestra
Number of Discs: 1 
Recorded in:   
In Stock: Usually ships in 24 hours.  
Blu-ray Video:  $39.99
In Stock



Notes and Editorial Reviews

Note: This Blu-ray Disc is only playable on Blu-ray Disc players and not compatible with standard DVD players.

Also available on standard DVD

In 2011 the Berliner Philharmoniker and their musical director Sir Simon Rattle welcomed in the New Year with a gala concert programmed with ‘Dances & Dreams’.

Spinetingling and inspiring performances of music by Dvo?ák, Ravel, Richard Strauss, Stravinsky and Brahms are complemented by the extraordinary talent of the multi-awarded Russian pianist Evgeny Kissin. Kissin’s musicality, the depth and poetic quality of his interpretations, and his extraordinary virtuosity have
Read more placed him at the forefront of today’s pianists, and his passionate performance of the renowned Piano Concerto in A minor by Edvard Grieg is mesmerizing. - Euroarts

Recorded live at the Philharmonie, Berlin, 31 December 2011

Picture format: 1080i Full-HD
Sound format: PCM Stereo / DTS-HD Master Audio 5.1
Region code: 0 (worldwide)
Booklet notes: English, German, French
Running time: 86 mins
No. of Discs: 1 (Blu-ray)

R E V I E W: 3653230.zz6_DANCES_DREAMS_Simon_Rattle.html

DANCES AND DREAMS Simon Rattle, cond; Berlin PO; Evgeny Kissin (pn) EUROARTS 2058724 (Blu-ray: 86:00) Live: Berlin 12/31/2011


DVO?ÁK Slavonic Dances: Op. 46/1, Op. 72/7. GRIEG Symphonic Dance, Op. 64/2. Piano Concerto. RAVEL Alborada del gracioso. STRAUSS Salome: Dance of the 7 Veils. STRAVINSKY Firebird: Conclusion. BRAHMS Hungarian Dance No. 1


It’s not quite clear what it takes for a concert to be dubbed a “gala,” but in my experience, galas tend to disappoint. The last time I reviewed a Berlin Philharmonic New Year’s Gala (the 2003 edition), the experience was not a happy one (see Fanfare 35:4)—nor was the evening celebrating the 300th birthday of St. Petersburg (33:4). This 2011 event, fortunately, surpasses the expectations of the genre. Granted, the program is a nearly random collection of bits and pieces, barely held together by the overall title (it’s hard to think of the major offering, the Grieg Concerto, as either a dream or a dance). Granted, too, for all its barnstorming theatrics, for all its sparkling fingerwork, for all the luminous beauty of the slow movement, Kissin’s slightly impersonal reading of the Grieg offers no special insights—and his dour stage demeanor (especially in contest with Rattle’s evident pleasure in the act of performance) dampens the spirit of the celebration.


Elsewhere, though, the concert is excellent, with the Berlin Philharmonic offering exceptional polish and precision, without a trace of the machine-like frigidity that infects, say, the Cleveland Orchestra/Welser-Möst gala celebrating the 2006 opening of Carnegie Hall (31:5). Rattle and his band manage to bring out the sweetness of the Grieg Symphonic Dance’s outer sections without falling into the saccharine (listen to the superlatively molded oboe solo); they revel in the orchestral transgressions of the Strauss; and they serve up as stunning an Alborada as you could want, equally compelling in its dazzling play of light and in the darker moments that lie at its center.


Best of all, though, is the Firebird. The jacket is misleading about what we get here: It promises the Infernal Dance, Berceuse, and Finale from the “Suite.” In fact, what we get is the closing quarter hour of the original ballet, including music that’s not in any of the suites, in pretty much the original opulent orchestration (including all three harps, although without the extra on-stage trumpets). Those whose favored version of this music is the relatively scrawny 1919 suite may miss the trombone glissandos—but there’s certainly more than enough compensation in the extra juice of the fuller orchestra, in the extra timbral magic of Katschei’s awakening and death, and in that marvelous passage of “profound darkness” leading to the apotheosis. The performance, like those of the Strauss and Ravel, makes the most of the music’s imaginative colors—and like everything else here, it’s captured by the engineers in sound that’s almost terrifyingly realistic.


The concert begins with a rousing reading of Dvo?ák’s op. 46/1 (erroneously listed as being in C Minor on the jacket) played with just the right ironic schmaltz in its central section; it’s rounded off with, as an encore, a sibling from op. 72, delivered with electrifying drive. The Brahms Dance gets a deliciously slushy reading with tremendous wit. Fine video work, too, although—as is almost always the case—a bit too fluid and too consumed with close-ups. All in all, if this kind of potpourri attracts, you’ll find this a magnificent addition to your collection.


FANFARE: Peter J. Rabinowitz
Read less

Works on This Recording

1.
Hungarian Dances (21) for Orchestra, WoO 1: no 1 in G minor by Johannes Brahms
Conductor:  Simon Rattle
Orchestra/Ensemble:  Berlin Philharmonic Orchestra
Period: Romantic 
Written: 1868; Austria 
2.
Slavonic Dances (8) for Orchestra, Op. 46/B 83: no 1 in C major, Furiant by Antonín Dvorák
Conductor:  Simon Rattle
Orchestra/Ensemble:  Berlin Philharmonic Orchestra
Period: Romantic 
Written: 1878; Bohemia 
3.
Symphonic Dances (4), Op. 64: no 2, Allegretto grazioso by Edvard Grieg
Performer:  Evgeni Kissin (Piano)
Conductor:  Simon Rattle
Orchestra/Ensemble:  Berlin Philharmonic Orchestra
Period: Romantic 
Written: 1896-1897; Norway 
4.
Concerto for Piano in A minor, Op. 16 by Edvard Grieg
Conductor:  Simon Rattle
Orchestra/Ensemble:  Berlin Philharmonic Orchestra
Period: Romantic 
Written: 1868/1907; Norway 
5.
Miroirs: Alborada del gracioso by Maurice Ravel
Conductor:  Simon Rattle
Orchestra/Ensemble:  Berlin Philharmonic Orchestra
Period: 20th Century 
Written: 1904-1905; France 
6.
Salome, Op. 54: Dance of the seven veils by Richard Strauss
Conductor:  Simon Rattle
Orchestra/Ensemble:  Berlin Philharmonic Orchestra
Period: Romantic 
Written: 1903-1905; Germany 
7.
Firebird Suite: Danse infernale by Igor Stravinsky
Conductor:  Simon Rattle
Orchestra/Ensemble:  Berlin Philharmonic Orchestra
Period: 20th Century 
Written: 1945; USA 
8.
Firebird Suite: Berceuse by Igor Stravinsky
Conductor:  Simon Rattle
Orchestra/Ensemble:  Berlin Philharmonic Orchestra
Period: 20th Century 
Written: 1919; Switzerland 
9.
Firebird Suite: Finale by Igor Stravinsky
Conductor:  Simon Rattle
Orchestra/Ensemble:  Berlin Philharmonic Orchestra
Period: 20th Century 
Written: 1919; Switzerland 

Customer Reviews

Be the first to review this title
Review This Title
Review This Title Share on Facebook




YOU MUST BE A SUBSCRIBER TO LISTEN TO ARKIVMUSIC STREAMING.
TRY IT NOW FOR FREE!
Sign up now for two weeks of free access to the world's best classical music collection. Keep listening for only $19.95/month - thousands of classical albums for the price of one! Learn more about ArkivMusic Streaming
Aleady a subscriber? Sign In