The short-lived Nicolai is better known for his operatic effort The Merry
Wives of Windsor so it is good that MD&G are celebrating the less obvious.
Of course neglect is sometimes justified. This turns out not to be the case
Joyous Beethovenian bravura from same bloodgroup as the Beethoven's Choral
Fantasy (much under-rated) and the Third and Fourth piano concertos. There
is also restraint and tenderness aplenty amidst all the coruscating notes.
The dashing piano part is pressed forward and breasted by MD&G regular
Claudius Tanski - a most convincing performance. The work is restless with
excitement and rich in detail.
The Symphony is a lanky tense romantic effort with currents cross-cutting
from Schumann (Symphonies 3 and 4) and Beethoven (Symphonies 5 and 7). The
Adagio (II) is a steady reflective affair of Mozartian gravity and charm.
Schumann is a definite presence in the scherzo (III) and here the nice sense
of gradation and contrast evident throughout this production communicates
strongly - a joy to hear. The blessed precision and control of the finale,
chasseur horns, Coronation splendour and general sense of classic celebration
Two extremely rewarding and out-of-the-mainstream works done with style in
every department and good notes to match.