Andrey Boreyko makes nice with Martin Chalifour and the LA Philharmonic
Photo: mine 2009
The Los Angeles Philharmonic cruised into its regular programming this weekend
following twelve days of the Gustavo Dudamel circus and one of those film music shows under John Williams. Our great orchestra was under the leadership of the young Russian up and comer Andrey Boreyko this time around in a program of this and that from Stravinsky, Ravel, Tchaikovsky and Lutoslawski. And while Boreyko may not have all of the “fire and music” of the Dud, he delivered a solid show. The varied program was billed as consisting of works where composers overcame challenges imposed by those who commission new works. It’s a bit of a thin concept, and much of the work could just as easily be classified as dance music in that two of the pieces, Tchaikovsky’s music from Sleeping Beauty
and Stravinsky’s Divertimento from La Baiser de la Fée
were for ballets and Ravel’s La Valse
is, well…you know.
Probably the best thing amongst these bits and pieces, though, was Lutoslawski’s Chain 2
, a four movement violin concerto originally written for Anne-Sophie Mutter. Played here by concertmaster, Martin Chalifour, the work has a sort of outer spacey beauty as if stars are talking to each other in the nighttime sky. While it is clearly of the 20th century, it is still connected to a more romantic tradition of virtuosity with a nimble and difficult solo part that doesn’t rely on big dramatic flourishes as it does fleet-footed interchange with the orchestra. It was a lovely performance from Chalifour, and Boreyko managed to keep the orchestra on the same level and active in the interchange.
While the rest of the evening wasn’t bad, nothing really lived up to this earlier moment. The Stravinsky and Tchaikovsky sounded somewhat non-committal and uncertain. Ravel’s maniacal spin through the early years of the Twentieth century sounded quite pointed and political in Boreyko’s hands. There was no mistaking his belief that Ravel had something much, much more in mind than an homage to a dance and cultural tradition. So even if it wasn't a perfect concert, it had more than a few worthwhile moments to recommend it.
Labels: LA Philharmonic 09/10