Webmaster: Len Mullenger
Seen and Heard Concert Review
Mozart & Shostakovich: Barbara Bonney (soprano), Philharmonia Orchestra/Vladimir Ashkenazy, QEH, 29.11.2005 (CC)
Big-boned Mozart, out-of-phase as it may be with current
historically-informed performance practice, has a distinct
appeal. Ashkenazy has long been associated with the music of this composer, but as a pianist,
so it was interesting to hear his take on the 'Haffner'
symphony (D, K385). A sense of deflation in the first movement's
development section pointed towards short rehearsal time,
an impression only underlined by certain anonymity that
characterized the (very well played) Andante. The cellos
and double-basses tend to come across as rather plummy
in the QEH's acoustic. Ashkenazy
chose a break-neck speed for the finale – good job the Philharmonia
has no problems with this sort of challenge – but some charm
wouldn't have gone amiss.