Saturday, February 29, 2020

Paavo Järvi et Khatia Buniatishvili dans un programme contrasté à la Philharmonie de Paris

resmusica.com
Patrick Jézéquel
29.02.2020

Pour ce concert, trois pages symphoniques composent un menu complet et roboratif, parfait pour une veillée hivernale. Avec, aux fourneaux, deux grandes vedettes : Khatia Buniatishvili et Paavo Järvi. Sans oublier le très exact l’Orchestre symphonique de la NHK.



La première œuvre au programme invite à une croisière entre l’Europe et le Japon. Son titre, How Slow the Wind (1991), est en effet tiré par Toru Takemitsu d’un poème d’Emily Dickinson ayant pour cadre l’océan. Cela n’est guère étonnant de la part d’un compositeur très inspiré par Debussy et qui, la même année, dans Quotation of dreams, cite plusieurs fois La Mer, comme une sorte de mantra. Ici aussi, le motif apaisé de sept sons qui ouvre la pièce revient régulièrement, de manière entêtante, passant d’un pupitre à l’autre et chaque fois modifié mais toujours identifiable, telle une vague. Musique raffinée, apaisée et tout à fait maîtrisée par la phalange nippone, qui sait être présente ou devenir transparente dans une palette restreinte, où percent parfois, en arrière-fond, quelques harmonies orientales. L’assurance naturelle de Paavo Järvi, sa décontraction apparente, ne mettent que mieux en évidence la cohérence de son projet. Le plaisir de l’auditeur est extrême.

Changement d’époque, d’esthétique et d’atmosphère avec le Concerto pour piano et orchestre n° 3 (1803) de Ludwig van Beethoven. Est-il vraiment japonais cet orchestre dont les trompettes sont à palettes et allemands les archets de contrebasse ? Quoi qu’il en soit, ce qui saute aux oreilles, c’est sa rondeur ainsi que sa ductilité sous la baguette du chef. Avant même de poser les mains sur le clavier, Khatia Buniatishvili vibre aux accents virils de cet ensemble de premier ordre. Et puis elle réexpose le premier thème avec une fougue digne de Martha Argerich. Mais la comparaison s’arrête là, car la connaissance parfaite de la partition ne cache pas une certaine superficialité ni quelques imperfections çà et là, en particulier des fins de phrases à peine audibles. Ici encore, la pensée de Järvi innerve l’œuvre, ce qui se sent notamment dans le parfait équilibre entre le piano et la masse sonore de l’orchestre. La soliste est à son meilleur dans le dernier mouvement, le plus énergique des trois.

Après l’entracte vient la Symphonie n° 7 en mi majeur (1883) d’Anton Bruckner. Cette fois encore, il suffit de fermer les yeux pour entendre un orchestre allemand, si habile à passer d’un climat à l’autre, tel un randonneur alpin tour à tour trempé par la pluie, séché au soleil ou disparaissant dans la brume. La preuve ? La présence quasi physique du fantôme Wagner, qui hante cette musique en forme d’hommage funèbre. Œuvre magnifique, qui peut paraître un peu longue, principalement à cause du quatrième mouvement, plus abstrait et plus bavard, comme s’il cherchait une issue à son propos. L’orchestre répond parfaitement au maestro, rayonnant d’intelligence.

Un ­beau moment, sans faute de goût aucune, et servi dans un espace hors pair : la Grande Salle Pierre-Boulez.
Crédits photographiques : © Kaupo Kikkas

Friday, February 28, 2020

NHK Symphony mit Buniatishvili betörend im Konzerthaus

derstandard.de
28.02.2020

Unter der Leitung von Paavo Järvi gab man Beethoven und Bruckner



Khatia Buniatishvili, die sternenflammende Königin im Reich von Ebenholz und Elfenbein, betörte am Klavier.Foto: Esther Haase / Sony Classica

In Sachen Klassik weist die Handelsbilanz zwischen Alter Welt und Asien einen extremen Exportüberschuss Europas aus. Dem will das NHK Symphony Orchestra entgegenwirken: Im Konzerthaus gab man unter der Leitung von Paavo Järvi Beethoven und Bruckner.

Und selbst das fernöstliche Präludium war hörbar abendländisch inspiriert: Tôru Takemitsus How Slow the Wind schien auf bezaubernde Weise in den Klangwelten von Debussy, Mahler und Korngold verortet. Schläfrig, schlaff und seifig interpretierten die Japaner dann die Orchestereinleitung von Beethovens drittem Klavierkonzert. Khatia Buniatishvili, die sternenflammende Königin im Reich von Ebenholz und Elfenbein, adaptierte sich an ihrem Arbeitsgerät augenblicklich, watteweicher Wohlklang betörte das Ohr, aparte Armbewegungen das Auge. Wildheit blieb wohldosiert, erst in der Kadenz erlaubte sich die in Paris lebende Georgierin, komplett "auszuzucken". Diese Frau kann am Klavier alles, da gab es keinen Ton, der nicht sinnlich, klug und originell gestaltet gewesen wäre.

Überlange drei Stunden

Als Zugabe spielte Buniatishvili Schuberts Ges-Dur-Impromptu, rätselhafterweise aber nur dessen letzten Teil. Vielleicht ahnte die 32-Jährige schon, dass das Konzert mit knapp drei Stunden überlang werden würde? Bei Bruckners siebter Symphonie spielte die Ausnahmekünstlerin leider nicht mehr mit. Järvi zelebrierte das Großwerk gekonnt, die beeindruckende Leistung der Japaner wurde jedoch von zahlreichen Patzern der Bläser geschmälert. Als Zugabe narkotisierte Sibelius’ Valse triste. 

„Slow“: Khatia Buniatishvili.

Kronen Zeitung
28.02.2020

KONZERTHAUS: Das NHK Symphony Orchestra Tokyo, 1926 gegründet, Japans ältestes Profi-Orchester, präsentiert sich auf seiner EuropaTournee mit Khatia Buniatishvili unter Paavo Järvi. Klänge der Heimat standen am Beginn: Tōru Takemitsus „How slow the Wind“von 1991. Bekömmliche Moderne. Klingt, als würde Debussys Faun unter Kirschblüten meditieren. Sehr „slow“ist dieser brav gespielte Orchesterwind. Allerdings immer noch spannender, als wenn Khatia Buniatishvili, nach pauschal exekutiertem 1. Satz, in Beethovens 3. Klavierkonzert das Largo in Zeitlupe aus dem Flügel klaubt. Dem auseinanderfallenden zweiten Satz half auch der im Gegenzug völlig überdrehte, als banale Fingerschnellübung exekutierte dritte Satz nicht mehr.
Zur Herausforderung wurde danach Bruckners „Siebente“. Wenn aber unter der umsichtigen Leitung von Paavo Järvi neben einer etwas schlaffen, aber soliden Streicher-Phalanx, Holzbläser und das Blech so rasant abfallen, wird Bruckner zur Orchesterfalle.

NHK-Orchester: Lauschen über den Tellerrand hinaus

wienerzeitung.at
Jens F. Laurson
28.02.2020


Reüssierte mit Bruckner: Pultstar Paavo Järvi.© Kaupo Kikkas

Spitze Zungen behaupten, Japan habe eine längere Brucknertradition als Wien. Fest steht, dass Japanische Orchester - über den legendären Takashi Asahina und seine Osaka Philharmoniker hinaus - zu Bruckner einen ganz besonderen Bezug haben. Alleine schon deswegen war die Konstellation des NHK-Orchesters mit Bruckners Siebenter Symphonie im Konzerthaus von besonderem Interesse - und auf doppelte Weise ein Heimspiel im Ausland.

Zugegeben, das traditionsreichste japanische Orchester hatte nicht seinen allerbesten (und die Bläser nicht ihren kieks- und wackelfreien) Tag. Aber wie sich die massiven Speckstein-Formationen hier kantenlos auftürmten, in ungeniert vollem Klang und mit schmetterfreudigem Blech, das war gerade in den Außensätzen eine beeindruckende Bruckner-Demonstration. Dass sich Dirigent Paavo Järvi dabei auf sein Orchester und dessen Tradition einlässt, ist schon daran erkennbar, um wie vieles schlanker dieser Bruckner zum Beispiel mit dem hr-Sinfonieorchester unter der Leitung des Pultstars klingt.

Vor der Pause gab es Beethovenschen Glitzerreigen mit Khatia Buniatishvili: Ein mit Theatralik beladenes Drittes Klavierkonzert, immer auf Kontraste aus und vor lauter Hochdynamik ermüdend. Es war wiederum bewusst kontrastiert mit Schuberts Ges-Dur-Impromptu D 899/3 als Zugabe: Eine herrlich kontrolliert gespielte Studie in mezzo-piano-Ebenmäßigkeit. Die feine, zu Konzertbeginn servierte Musik von Toru Takemitsu, hier das Spätwerk "How slow the Wind", spricht eine moderne und doch leicht zu erfassende Klangsprache, in zarten Farben, delikat, mit ausdrucksvollen Nachklängen und Pausen. Es machte Lust auf mehr.

Thursday, February 27, 2020

Parvo Järvi, NHK Symphony Orchestra, Royal Festival Hall

classical-iconoclast.blogspot.com
Marc Bridle
27.02.2020


Does an orchestra have to be centuries old for its sound to be unique and definable? In many cases the answer is yes, but there are rare instances of twentieth century orchestras which have become recognisable for their sound – the Philharmonia for their woodwind, the Symphonieorchester des Bayerischen Rundfunks for that extraordinary blend of mellowness – and the NHKSO for the monumental richness of their strings. There is a particular quality to Japanese string playing, and no orchestra represents it better than this one.
Of the two symphonies the NHKSO are playing on their current European tour it is probably the Bruckner Seventh, which they played at their first concert in Estonia, which would have better impressed on us the sheer range of their strings. But it was evident in Schumann’s Cello Concerto, and ample enough in Rachmaninoff’s sweepingly romantic E minor symphony. Indeed, there was absolutely nothing understated about that performance: It may not have been overly lush, but it was heavy on dramatic impact and it seared in a way which is unusual in performances of this work. Robert Simpson’s 1967 assessment of this symphony as a work which “lapses into facile sentiment… collapses under its own weight… and drifts towards inflation” couldn’t have seemed more inappropriate, harsh or outdated as viewed through the prism of Parvo Järvi and his players.
Järvi is not a conductor who tends to hang fire in much of what he conducts; indeed, his tendency for dynamic tempos can benefit certain composers (Bartók and Shostakovich) but it can sometimes work against others (Richard Strauss and Mahler). In Rachmaninoff he is at the extreme end of the spectrum, especially when compared to two other live recordings the NHKSO made with other conductors, Yevgeny Svetlanov and André Previn. Svetlanov’s performance from September 2000 is the slowest, with an Adagio which stretches beyond 17 minutes; Previn’s, from September 2007, is typically mainstream for this conductor. There is a consensus that this Previn is his finest interpretation of the work; there is also a consensus the clarinet solo in the Adagio is particularly weak, an indication of some of this orchestra’s weaknesses. Järvi’s soloist, the hugely expressive Kei Ito, gave a performance as fine as any I have heard, an indication this orchestra can be a chameleon when it wants to.
You never quite know with a performance of this symphony where a conductor is quite going with it during its opening 20 bars – will it be Rachmaninoff, or will it be more like Tchaikovsky’s Fifth? The opening motto on cellos and basses suggested the former, while the echo of the theme on first violins followed in quick succession on the second violins – an echo that was achieved here by antiphonal strings – confirmed this impression. It was only Järvi’s treatment of this movement’s climaxes which somewhat muddied the waters – the first suggestion of the Dies Irae on clarinets and violas, the rampant timpani, the stripping away of romanticism in the violins, woodwind and horns slipping into brutality. This wasn’t a notably balanced view of the first movement by the end of it.
The Allegro molto – perhaps not taken at that tempo – was riotous. If the virtuosity and precision of this orchestra is a given, in the past it has sometimes leant towards being mechanical and perfunctory. That is not the case today; this is a body of players who tends to exhibit an involvement with the music, and it was notable during this performance how often they swayed gently and moved with their conductor’s beat. But this was playing which often sounded robust and muscular – those massively powerful trumpets and trombones, the chasmic basses, the yawning clarinet, and yet how sudden the orchestra could plummet into the one bar of complete silence which is unique to this movement. If the Allegro molto sometimes veers towards moments of dialogue between its instruments this was not entirely convincingly done here. But there were sections – the fugue, the coda – which pressed the lyrical side of the music.
The Adagio – very slightly more measured than it had been in the broadcast of their performance at Suntory Hall on the 5th of February – was potent and vigorous rather than inclined towards romanticism. Järvi’s willingness to strip down the intensity of slow movements in some symphonies – a notable feature of his Mahler Sixth – can sometimes make them seem indelicate; indeed, one often wonders if Järvi isn’t looking backwards to a stricter view of romanticism but forwards to a leaner kind you find in works, for example, by Bartók. The clarinet solo here was undeniably beautiful, but it was a moment of lone expression, a voice sealed inside a chorus of strings which were stripped of all sentimentality. Clarinet and oboe solos, and the duet with the cor anglais, mirrored that long first solo, but how Järvi drove the climax, the pause at its close almost toppling into the beginning of the development. If there had been a particular vision here it was in striking a contrast between this movement’s ecstasy and its crests. Some conductors certainly make this music sound excessively rich; Järvi is not one of those, and this performance of the Adagio had a freshness of expression.
The beginning of the Finale felt more like Tchaikovsky than perhaps any of the previous ones had done; and the rest of it never really deviated from that. The thrust of this movement – an Allegro vivace – often felt it was bulldozing towards inevitability. The timpani which sounded as if it were on a parade, ascending triplets shooting like gunfire, hammering trumpets and drumming horns, cellos descending into the grave, pizzicato octaves on violins and violas that were explosive – all were symptomatic of an orchestra that would eventually be sucked into a vortex. And it was never less than stunningly virtuosic.
I think Järvi ripped much of the richness and glow from this Rachmaninoff and what we were left with was a diametric view of a symphony which was leaner on its romanticism and more inclined towards drama. This wasn’t a view of the work which addressed the symphony’s conventional opulence; nor was it one which saw it dripping in pigments and tints. It was undeniably high on drama, and a view of it which was convincing only if one could open one’s ears to the strikingly different impact we got.

Sol Gabetta, Parvo Järvi. photo : Belinda Lawley
Schumann’s Cello Concerto is in some ways an enigmatic work. It eschews both a conventional structure – although its three movements are distinct, they are played without a break between them – and it lacks the virtuosity of many cello concertos written during the same period of its composition. In another sense, it might not necessarily be a piece one would wish to play with an orchestra quite as powerful as the NHKSO.
What the work has in common with some of Schumann’s symphonies is a lyricism which is suggestive of lieder. The development section of the first movement is a substantial dialogue between the orchestra and soloist; the slow movement can sometimes appear in its poetic inspiration like a series of disconnected phrases; and there is even the hint of a duet with the soloist and principal cellist. Sol Gabetta showed considerable skill in navigating much of the concerto’s challenges. There was a femininity to her playing, a vocalisation to her fingering which understood the work’s inner voices. In her duet with the NHKSO’s cellist, Ryoichi Fujimori, the difference in tonal colour worked well. But there is also a strength and force to Gabetta’s playing which comfortably rose above the orchestra’s brawnier strings; and her meditative, sometimes contemplative interpretation of the work was projected rather than understated. If not an epic performance that relied on power (but then this work hardly needs it), it was one which easily contextualised the concerto’s emotional curves.
The concert had opened with Takemitsu’s How Slow the Wind. Based on an Emily Dickinson poem from 1883, it is his only piece for chamber orchestra, and certainly different in style and meaning to another setting of this poem by the Argentine composer Osvaldo Golijov who had written the piece for soprano and string quartet.
It is probably wrong to interpret Takemitsu’s orchestration of the work as being more large scale than one expects it to sound in performance. Its strings (8-6-4-4-2), and the delicacy and restraint of the writing that Takemitsu gives to them, is never going to stretch the tone of the players – not even for a string section as rich as that of the NHKSO. If this often felt more like a Japanese version of Haydn it was because it largely was. The work is grounded on repetition – rather a lot of it – and it is a balancing act for the strings of any orchestra to make the length of the piece not outstay its welcome. The NHK strings had an elasticity of colour, a delicacy of sound, and an ability to shape-shift what came before and what came after. Some of the orchestration might feel a little odd, even perhaps cluttered – the cowbells, the variegation in percussion – a vibraphone and glockenspiel – a harp, a piano and celesta but this is an orchestra which is notable for its clarity and the way it can make textures distinctly separate. That is exactly what we got here under Järvi’s knife-like and precision conscious baton.
The only encore of the concert – unlike the luckier Estonians who had been given two, the other being Sibelius’s Valse Triste – was Heino Eller’s Kodumaine viis. A reminder of Järvi’s roots, that country’s Independence Day and the NHK Symphony Orchestra’s glorious string section it perhaps settled once and for all what makes this orchestra such a special instrument. 

Messiaen: L’Ascension; Le Tombeau Resplendissant; Les Offrandes Oubliees; Un Sourire - Tonhalle-Orchester Zürich; Paavo Järvi

thewholenote.com
Daniel Foley
27.01.2020



Messiaen – L’Ascension; Le Tombeau Resplendissant; Les Offrandes Oubliees; Un Sourire
Tonhalle-Orchester Zürich; Paavo Järvi
Alpha-Classics.com ALPHA 548 (naxosdirect.com)

To celebrate Paavo Järvi’s appointment as their new music director, the Tonhalle-Orchester Zürich has released this admirable collection of early orchestral works by Olivier Messiaen (1908-1992), a composer demonstrably dear to Järvi’s heart. The disc begins with Le Tombeau resplendissant (1931), a lesser-known work that reflects a crucial time in Messiaen’s life; it bears an unsettling autobiographical program note that begins, “My youth is dead: it was I who killed it.” Perhaps feeling it was too personally revealing, he withdrew the work from his catalogue for decades. It was eventually published in 1997. This is followed by the transcendent “symphonic meditation” Les Offrandes oubliées (1930), one of his most successful works in this genre.

Notably absent in the works of the 1930s, Messiaen’s preoccupation with birdsong is front and centre, alternating with retrospective hymnal passages reminiscent of his earlier style, in the late Un sourire (1989), which premiered December 5, 1991, as Messiaen’s exquisite contribution to the bicentenary of Mozart’s death. The recording concludes with the original orchestral version of the lengthy, supremely Catholic devotional tone poem L’Ascension – Quatre méditations symphoniques (1932/33); the later 1934 version, with a different third movement, is a well-known crown jewel of the organ repertoire.

Järvi maintains an excellent command of the orchestra throughout. The dense harmonies projected by the Zürich strings are sublime and expertly balanced, the percussion section is impressively resonant and solo passages are outstanding. A very fine job indeed by the recording team, sourced from live performances from January and April 2019.

Tuesday, February 25, 2020

Paavo Järvi maagia ja meisterlikkus

postimees.ee
Kai Taal
25.02.2020

FOTO: Gunnar Laak

  • Järvide perekonna panust Eesti tutvustamisse on võimatu üle hinnata.
  • Paavo Järvi suudab nii proovis kui kontserdil luua suurepärase atmosfääri.
  • Järvil on erakordne oskus jälgida solisti ja orkestri vahelist balanssi.

Jaapani Ringhäälingu NHK sümfooniaorkester alustas oma peadirigendi Paavo Järvi juhatusel Euroopa-turneed publikut lummanud kontserdiga Estonia kontserdisaalis. Solist on tšellist Sol Gabetta. 

Juba enne Paavo Järvi juhatusel Estonia kontserdisaalis mänginud Jaapani ringhäälingu NHK orkestri esinemise algust valitses saalis eriline atmosfäär, kontsert oli viimse kohani välja müüdud. Etteruttavalt olgu öeldud, et muusikuid saatis suur edu ja menu, publik võttis kontserdi vastu erakordselt soojalt. Kuid mind huvitab kontsertide juures muu.

Paavo Järvi on NHK sümfooniaorkestri peadirigent viiendat hooaega ning möödunud aasta sügisel pikendas oma lepingut aastani 2022. Eelmise Euroopa-turnee tegi orkester maestro Järviga kolm aastat tagasi, kuid Eestisse tuldi esimest korda. Pärast Maarjamaal antud turnee avakontserti ootavad vallutamist Euroopa suurlinnad ning parimad kontserdisaalid: Londoni Royal Festival Hall, Pariisi Filharmoonia, Wiener Konzerthaus, Kölni Filharmoonia, Dortmundi Konzerthaus, Amsterdami Concertgebouw, Berliini Filharmoonia ja Brüsseli Palais des Beaux-Arts. Tuuril osalevad ka kaks solisti: Eesti kontserdil esinenud Argentina päritolu tšellist Sol Gabetta ning Gruusiast pärit pianist Khatia Buniatishvili, kes esitavad vastavalt Schumanni ja Beethoveni kontserte.

Siin väikeses Eestis elades tundub ehk, et meid teatakse-tuntakse laias maailmas päris hästi. Ringi reisides selgub siiski, et nii see tihti pole, kuid paljud minu tutvused, vestlused (ja mõnikord ka sõprused) on alanud kahest sõnast – Paavo Järvi. Seda, kui palju on Järvi perekond teinud Eesti tutvustamise heaks, on võimatu üle hinnata. Maailmakuulsate muusikutena on nad niikuinii pigem maailmakodanikud, kuid nende soov ennast eestlastena esitleda, Eestit ja eesti kultuuri tutvustada on liigutav.

Pärast laupäevast kontserti mõtlesin palju keele tähtsusele. Millest algab tõeline teineteisemõistmine ja kui suur roll on sõnadel? Kui tähtis on see, mida öelda ja kuidas öelda? Või millal midagi ütlemata jätta? Inglise keel, mis on selle orkestri töökeel, pole ei Paavo Järvi ega orkestri muusikute emakeel, kuid nad mõistavad üksteist suurepäraselt.

Järvide soov ennast eestlastena esitleda, Eestit ja eesti kultuuri tutvustada on liigutav.

Mul oli õnn kuulata ka kontserdile eelnenud proovi ning võisin vaid kadedusega tõdeda, millise sundimatusega loob Paavo Järvi nii proovis kui ka kontserdil atmosfääri, kus kõik asjaosalised tunnevad end hästi ja erilisena. Järvi suudab tuua muusikutest välja nende parima, nad on aktiivsed, tähelepanelikud, pühendunud ja loomingulised. Seda pole ma paraku näinud just liiga sageli. Mind lausa lummas see austus ja armastus, mida tajusin dirigendi ja tema orkestri vahel. Pole midagi parata – see on eeldus, et sünniksid erilised ja aastateks meelde jäävad kontserdid, vastupidisel juhul toimub üritus, kus kostavad küll helid, kuid «elus» muusikat pole. Usun, et enamik inimesi on seda kogenud.

Kontserdi avaloona kõlanud Tōru Takemitsu «How slow the wind» tõi eesti publikule killukese Jaapanit, loo fantaasiarikas kõlamaailm tekitas loodetavasti nii mõnelegi soovi selle ilmselt kuulsaima jaapani helilooja muusikat rohkem kuulata. Sol Gabettat on Eestisse juba ammu oodatud, tema tõlgendus Schumanni tšellokontserdist sel õhtul oli ühtaegu vaimustav ja liigutav. Gabetta on tundlik ja siiras muusik, kes suure kõlajõu asemel panustab pigem varjunditesse ja detailidesse. Seda imetlusväärsem oli, kui õnnestunud koostöö tekkis tema ja Paavo Järvi vahel, kui tundlikud partnerid olid orkestri muusikud sellele võrratule tšellistile.

Kogu esitusel oli tugev kurbuse, kohati lausa traagilisuse pitser, mida pole sel määral Järvi tõlgendustes varem märganud.

Teatrisaaliks ehitatud Estonia kontserdisaal pole teatavasti kontsertide jaoks väga sobiliku akustikaga ning seda tuletab meile pidevalt meelde ka äsja valminud EMTA suur saal, kus muusikud end palju vabamalt tunnevad ja publik head akustikat naudib. Seetõttu tundus täiesti uskumatu, kui hästi suutis Järvi jälgida solisti ja orkestri vahelist balanssi, nii et Gabetta mäng hetkekski orkestri alla ei mattunud. Esituses oli rohkesti paindlikkust ja mängurõõmu, tundlikkust ja sügavust, uhket ja jõulist väljendust ning intiimset pihtimust. Õhtu kulminatsioon oli Bruckneri imekauni 7. sümfoonia ettekanne ning kontserdisaalis pole ma Bruckneri muusikat mõjuvamalt kuulnud. Järvi suutis ühendada massiivsuse ja kerguse, laulvuse ja faktuurikihtide selguse. I osa üsna rahulik tempo lõi lummava kõlamaailma, kus oli ometi selge ja veenev ülesehitus; jälgida teose vormi kujundamist kogu sümfoonia ajal oli omaette nauding. Kogu esitusel oli tugev kurbuse, kohati lausa traagilisuse pitser, mida sel määral pole Järvi tõlgendustes varem märganud. Värske ja kütkestav nägemus sellest vist ühest kaunimast muusikaliteratuuri sümfooniast jääb kahtlemata kauaks meelde.

Lisapalana esitatud «Kodumaine viis» oli oma sügavas väljendusjõus ääretult liigutav ning kontserti lõpetav Sibeliuse «Valse triste» oma plahvatusliku kulminatsiooniga väljus selle esitusega lõplikult lisapala staatusest, kujunedes küll lühikeseks, kuid sügavaks dramaatiliseks episoodiks.

NHKSO/Gabetta/Järvi review – spirited Schumann and driving Takemitsu

theguardian.com
Erica Jeal
25.02.2020

Poised … Sol Gabetta with NHK Symphony Orchestra and conductor Paavo Järvi.

Paavo Järvi’s first European tour with Tokyo’s NHK Symphony Orchestra, three years ago, featured sensitively played Takemitsu and driven, exciting Mahler. This time, in their performance of Rachmaninov’s Symphony No 2, the drive was so great there was little room for anything else.

First came more Takemitsu – his Emily Dickinson-inspired work How Slow the Wind at once peaceful and restless in its shimmering repetition. Perhaps the forces might usefully have been kept at chamber orchestra level for Schumann’s Cello Concerto. Sol Gabetta’s poised playing of the solo part began in measured, thoughtful style, and had a spirited intelligence, with no empty bluster. But the balance very much favoured the orchestra, even though Järvi kept them down. At least as Gabetta played – and sang – her mesmerising encore, Pēteris Vasks’s Gramata cellam – Dolcissimo, there was no need to compete.

The first movement of the Rachmaninov was a lesson in how to keep this music from getting stuck. Some passages were led by melody, others unfolded simply as progressions of harmonies. The willingness of Järvi and his orchestra to push onwards in one of the most wallow-able symphonies around was gratifying, but the insistence on the underlying rhythmic drive tipped over into something that felt almost mechanical. There was no doubt the music was going to reach its destination, so where was the struggle? The arrival of the finale didn’t bring the sense of release that this mammoth work needs. But the encore was a celebration – as the Estonian Järvi pointed out, it was his country’s independence day – and the strings’ playing of Heino Eller’s Homeland Melody felt soulful, even if there were few Estonians in the hall.

Gabetta, NHK SO, Järvi, RFH review - transparency and dynamism

theartsdesk.com
Gavin Dixon
25.02.2020

Japan’s flagship ensemble brings clarity and focus under its powerful chief conductor


Paavo Järvi: expressive but never extrovert

This concert represented the British leg of the NHK Symphony Orchestra’s European tour. Tokyo’s radio orchestra is Japan’s flagship ensemble, and they are fine advocates for the country’s thriving musical culture, the playing precise and the tone focused. Paavo Järvi is the orchestra’s Chief Conductor and a good fit for the orchestra’s sound. Järvi takes a similarly focused approach, expressive but never extrovert. He has a real feeling for drama as well, often driving climaxes furiously, while always relying on the orchestra’s unshakable unity. Despite his minimal gestures, he has a tendency to micro-manage, concentrating on individual phrases at the expense of the overall flow. But nothing here was ever mechanical or formulaic, the music always breathing freely under Järvi’s baton

The programme opened with Takemitsu’s How slow the wind, a late work from 1991. It is scored for chamber orchestra, with a repeating motif continually passed around the players in different moods and guises. The style always feels just a step removed from Debussy, the harmonies ambiguous without being dissonant, the rhythms in constant flux, yet serene. But Järvi took a more ritualistic angle, keeping the phrases regimented and distinct. The NHK string sound has a clear and light quality that was particularly valuable for the Takemitsu, giving the textures an elegant transparency, well matched to the woodwind and percussion solos above.


Sol Gabetta (pictured left by Julia Wesely) was soloist for the Schumann Cello Concerto. Her restrained passion proved a good match for the NHK sound. Gabetta has a burnished, expressive tone, especially on the lower strings. In Schumann’s lyrical melodies, she often digs deep into the strings at the start of a phrase, but then trails off into dreamy but indistinct cadences. The orchestra accompanied with similar restraint, the dynamics minimal, the expression hesitant and muted. But it proved enough, with Gabetta providing enough charisma to carry the whole performance. For an encore, the quirky Dolcissimo by Pēteris Vasks: Gabetta’s encore for the First Night of the 2016 Proms, it just about retained its novelty value on a second hearing.

Qualities of transparency and restraint hardly seem fitting for Rachmaninov, and so his Second Symphony, which ended the programme, required something more. This was Järvi’s second performance of the work at the Southbank Centre in little over a year (he conducted the Philharmonia in it last February). His tempos were generally brisk, and he often built climaxes up with intense agogic force, but the textures always remained clear, and the balances carefully judged. Järvi has a good feeling for the shape of large-scale Romantic symphonies (for the rest of the tour, they are concluding concerts with Bruckner’s Seventh) but it is not always obvious from the start. Here, the openings of both the first movement and the third-movement Adagio felt flat and underinflected. But in both movements, Järvi gradually warmed the music, finding ever-more colour and richness from the ensemble. In the Adagio he was helped by a seductively rich clarinet solo from Kenji Matsumoto.

The huge climax of this movement felt out of proportion, driven and furious – a towering peak in the music, as if Järvi and his players still had their minds on the Bruckner. The scherzo second movement fared better, the orchestra’s clean attacks and transparent textures carrying the music, even at the loudest dynamics. Järvi again pushed the tempos in the finale, but the orchestra also afforded it some grandeur, with the lower brass providing weight and the scurrying woodwinds propulsion. The fast tempos sometimes compromised the music’s solemnity, but Järvi instead offered dynamism and drama, his theatrical flair ensuring a real sense of exhilaration for the closing pages.

NHK Symphony Orchestra / Jäarvi @ Royal Festival Hall, London

musicomh.com
Barry Creasy
25.02.2020



NHK Symphony Orchestra, Paavo Järvi & Sol Gabetta
(Photo: Belinda Lawley)

The Nippon Hoso Kyokai (NHK) Symphony Orchestra returned to London on Thursday with their Chief Conductor Paavo Järvi, to give excellent accounts of three works connected by their sensuous qualities.

Toru Takemitsu’s How slow the wind is the composer’s only work for chamber orchestra. It is a series of ‘episodes’ – short phrases made from instrumental accretions – which float like waterlilies of different colours and in different stages of opening on a tranquil harmonic pond. An enchanting seven-note rising phrase gradually makes its appearance, transformed, in each episode, by instrumentation, completeness or inversion. The piece might almost be considered as a development of the impressionist works of Debussy or Ravel. Järvi and the orchestra inhabited the work to perfection and delivered its delicate shimmering textures with skill and subtlety, allowing, through careful control of dynamic and balance, plenty of space for the listener to be drawn into its calm and finespun musical world.

The transcendental nature of the evening continued in the opening of Schumann’s Cello Concerto, for which the orchestra was joined by the Argentine cellist Sol Gabetta. Orchestra and soloist proceeded to give a textbook performance – which was nonetheless full of nuance – of this arguably most enigmatic of Schumann’s works. The transitions between movements (Schumann requires no pauses) were managed seamlessly, and the whole was suffused with an effortless competence. Gabetta’s style is appealing to those of us who regret the licence seemingly given to cellists to allow the physical to demonstrate their emotional involvement with the concerti they play. There are no sniffs or grunts, just solid technique, a clearly demonstrated connection with the music and its force, and a small amount of bend and sway. The intensity of the second movement was judged to perfection, and the no-fuss brilliance applied to the articulation of the rapid passages of the last movement merely added to the enjoyment. Although a smaller orchestra might have made for less effort in controlling dynamic and tone, Järvi kept the orchestra generally well balanced, so that its conversation with the soloist never became too unequal.

The Schumann formed a perfect bridge between the diaphanous dreamworld of the Takemitsu and the more solidly structured Romanticism of Rachmaninov’s Second Symphony. Rachmaninov is always dependable for a good tune, and in this symphony he wears his heart on his sleeve, turning out exquisitely beautiful melodic material everywhere – not just in the second, slow movement, where the yearning theme is introduced from the start, but even in the heart of the scherzo he gives us a rich violin melody, and takes time out of the final movement’s hectic trepak to provide some lush romanticism.

The trick here, then, is to prevent all of this gooeyness from becoming too cloying, and to give attention to the contrasting material, and Järvi and the orchestra did not disappoint on this front. Although the soupy passages were given the breathing space they needed, tempo and dynamic received iron control throughout, so that, although a solid drive was the order of the day, the changes in speed within this were pointed up to provide excitement; build-up of expectation and timing of delivery were spot on. The menace of the brass passage in the first movement was given full weight, the scherzo fugue was taken at breakneck pace, dynamic swells and retreats at the opening of the last movement were meticulously observed and the ‘bang’ before the entry of the grand melody in the same movement was startling. A tour de force of a performance.

https://www.musicomh.com/classical/reviews-classical/nhk-symphony-orchestra-jaarvi-royal-festival-hall-london

Passionate, ebullient Rachmaninov from Paavo Jarvi and the NHK

bachtrack.com
Mark Pullinger
25.02.2020

After his self-imposed exile from Russia in 1918, Sergei Rachmaninov never conducted his Second Symphony. Perhaps it was too painful a reminder of home – there’s something so quintessentially Russian about it. The Second can be an hour-long nostalgic wallow and faced criticism for meandering. Indeed, until the 1970s it was usually performed with cuts that hacked it back to 45 – or even 35 – minutes. But there were no longueurs in the performance by Paavo Järvi and the NHK Symphony Orchestra, Tokyo, on the London leg of their European tour, a propulsive account, driven along urgently. 


Paavo Järvi and the NHK Symphony Orchestra
© Belinda Lawley

This wasn’t the Rachmaninov that Stravinsky described as "a six-and-a-half foot scowl". Järvi led a passionate, ebullient reading. The NHK strings have a wonderfully dark, mahogany sound, evident from the sonorous cellos and double basses and the honeyed violins, split antiphonally, caressing phrases with the utmost care. Järvi’s conducting is totally non-flashy, never drawing attention to himself. He kept the opening Largo moving, more ardent and yearning, yet still streaked with melancholy. The transition into the Allegro moderato unfolded naturally and his flirtatious rubato teased the listener in each gentle push and pull. The engine room violas kept everything taut and rhythmically tidy in a Scherzo that rattled along, oboes and clarinets playing bells up, but Järvi pulled back to allow the strings time to swoon and sigh with deftly applied portamento. Although principal clarinet Kenji Matsumoto was given space to shape the great melody, the melting Adagio always had a sense of momentum. Järvi pushed headlong into the finale, the brass, despite a few imperfect entries, playing with a confident swagger right up to Rachmaninov’s punchy sign-off. One of the finest accounts of the Second I’ve heard in concert.

The evening had started with a postcard from Tokyo. Toru Takemitsu’s How slow the wind, taking its title from a poem by Emily Dickinson, is a fragile tone poem, lovingly handled by the NHK, all wispy harp and percussion and the waft of an alto flute. Did I detect a heat haze from Debussy’s Faune? There is certainly an elusive quality to the score, as if heard through gauze. It’s good that the NHK champion Takemitsu, as he is heard all too rarely in European concert halls.

Sol Gabetta, Paavo Järvi and the NHK Symphony Orchestra
© Belinda Lawley

Schumann’s Cello Concerto in A minor also needs strong advocates. It was never performed in the composer’s lifetime and has an elusive quality, difficult to pin down. Lyrical ideas flit past in an instant before the cello settles on a new idea. The concerto couldn’t have a finer champion than Sol Gabetta who played with great affection. The tone of her Matteo Goffriller is slender, never forced, enabling her to sing out the cantabile lines with much tenderness. She enjoyed great engagement with both conductor and orchestra, often “conducting” with her shoulders whilst not playing, spurring on the other string players in playful sport, especially in the rondo finale. Splendid too was her encore, a solo from Pēteris Vasks’ The Book of Cello which, as well as glissando slides and stratospheric high lines, requires the soloist to sing, which Gabetta did winsomely.

Monday, February 24, 2020

In concert – Sol Gabetta, NHK Symphony Orchestra Tokyo / Paavo Järvi: Takemitsu, Schumann & Rachmaninov

arcana.fm
Ben Hogwood
24.02.2020



Sol Gabetta (cello), NHK Symphony Orchestra Tokyo / Paavo Järvi (above)

Royal Festival Hall, Southbank Centre, London
Monday 24 February 2020

Takemitsu How slow the wind (1991)
Schumann Cello Concerto in A minor Op.129 (1850)
Rachmaninov Symphony no.2 in E minor Op.27 (1906-07)

Reviewed by Ben Hogwood

This Royal Festival Hall concert offered the relatively rare chance to catch the NHK Symphony Orchestra, on a mini-tour from Tokyo in the company of their chief conductor, Paavo Järvi.

As he told Arcana in an interview the previous week, Järvi has been acquainting himself with the music of Toru Takemitsu in recent years, culminating in a recording of his orchestral works with the NHK. One of them, How slow the wind, was a descriptive and colourful way in which to open the concert, presenting a picture of relative calm.

One of Takemitsu’s best qualities is the descriptive power of his music, which is able to capture the elements in a subtle but meaningful way. Rain, earth and air are three you can expect to encounter with particularly vivid results, and the latter was to the fore in this intriguing symphonic poem. As the title suggests, it really was the slowed down movement of air, and was played with attention to detail and affection, painting a picture far away from the Southbank. The influence of Debussy, as outlined by Järvi, was clear, but so too were elements of Ravel and Messiaen, though the percussive colours in which Takemitsu dressed the piece were wholly his own.


Sol Gabetta then took charge of the Schumann Cello Concerto. Clearly this is a piece she loves, and it is gratifying in recent years to see the concerto come into the centre of the instrument’s repertoire. The first movement, dominated by a nagging theme that stays in your head for long after, was a dramatic affair, the cellist seizing the initiative but ensuring Järvi and the relatively small orchestral forces were with her every step of the way. Gabetta’s high register tone was probing, with unerring accuracy in her tuning.

When Schumann moves seamlessly into the slow movement it is like walking into a different, calmer room of the same house, but Gabetta ensured the links throughout were clearly signposted, and her duet with leader of the NHK cellos Ryoichi Fujimori was both sensitive and ideally balanced.

The finale found a bold approach from Gabetta capitalizing on Schumann’s innovative writing, with the written-out cadenza particularly strongly executed before a thoroughly affirmative end. Gabetta capped this with the inclusion of the first movement of Vasks’ Gramata cellam as an encore. Gabetta gave this at the first night of the BBC Proms in 2016 and it is no less startling heard once again with its vocalisation.

For the second half it was slow burning Rachmaninov, the NHK smoothly into their stride for the first movement of the Symphony no.2 in E minor. If the moody bass strings at the opening were slightly withdrawn, that gave Järvi plenty to work with as the music unfolded. With the faster tempo came an airy texture as though the sun was shining through outdoors. Once we had glimpsed the brightness it was hard not to let go of it, and the Scherzo, taken at a fastish tempo, glinted at the edges.

Järvi judged the famous Andante just right, indulging in the gorgeous textures but never overdoing it, so that Kei Ito’s clarinet was given the best possible platform to deliver a heartstopping solo. Yet it was in the excited whoops of the finale where this interpretation really delivered, the orchestra stepping up another gear as the music excitedly passed between the instrument groups, percussion adding a sheen to the wonderful wall of sound.

It being Estonian Independence Day, Järvi – while noting the amusement of celebrating the day in London with a Japanese orchestra – gave us a glimpse of summer through Heino Eller’s sunkissed Homeland Tune, from the 5 Pieces for Strings. It was a fitting end to a concert that helpfully reminded us of the approach of spring – and in the process told of classical music’s potential reach. A Japanese orchestra conducted by an Estonian with an Argentinian cellist. What’s not to like about that?!

NHK Symphony Orchestra at Royal Festival Hall – Paavo Järvi conducts Toru Takemitsu's How slow the wind, and Sergei Rachmaninov's Second Symphony – Sol Gabetta plays Robert Schumann's Cello Concerto

classicalsource.com
Ateş Orga
24.02.2020


The NHK Symphony Orchestra, established in 1926, is currently on a western European tour under its chief conductor, Paavo Järvi, taking in Tallinn, London, Paris, Berlin, Vienna, Cologne, Dortmund, Brussels and Amsterdam. Familiar from previous London visits and through their many videos and telecasts, they're a nurtured, disciplined ensemble, strong on etiquette, steeped in tradition and style, with little to choose between the sections. Yes, the strings excel – wires of gold, a supremely silken, tenuto body, glowing and beautiful in sound. But who would not want to be without the liquid clarity of the woodwind, or the mellowed richness of the brass? The percussion pin rather than pulverise the hour. Logistics and schooling turned into art, the charismatic presence of the concertmaster, Fuminori Maro Shinozaki, a silvered warrior of a man (he completed his training under Ivry Gitlis), presiding over all.

Part of the 2019-20 Japan-UK Season of Culture, this was a connoisseur concert of quiet starts, quiet chapters, quiet encores, leaving the audience, especially in the first half, more perplexed and polite than anything else. Toru Takemitsu's How slow the wind (1991), taking its title from a poem by Emily Dickinson, orbits around a motif of seven notes, fashioning, in the composer's words “a repetitive cycle, like waves or the wind ... with each repetition the scene undergoing a subtle change in its appearance”. Järvi – who's just released an NHK Takemitsu CD on RCA Red Seal – finds the piece atmospheric and coloured with an unmistakeable kind of Japanese orientalism: “Takemitsu gives you a motif which never ends: you never achieve closure”. In around twelve minutes, with small forces and no baton, he released successive frames of timbre and imagery, clouds and pools, the odd glint, fleshing out the landscape, distant calls of Liadov or Debussy, the aftermath of crescendos, somewhere on the horizon. His players' risk-taking in the quieter spectrum, their precision balancing, near-defied belief … with this orchestra you can paint life and time.

Schumann's 1850 Cello Concerto – the three movements connected alla Mendelssohn, an (accompanied) cadenza placed in the last – has its moments but virtuosity isn't its raison d'être. Holding the stage while eschewing display, feeding off the orchestra, body language directing the action as much as Järvi on the rostrum, Sol Gabetta gave a thoughtful reading, at her soulful best in the beauties of the slow movement. Much of the chamber interplay was finely woven. And the tuttis had transient attack. Cumulatively, though, not all Schumann's repetitive figures and upward rushing surges held the attention, and weighting the accompaniment to the benefit of the cello, however understandable and necessary, led to opaqueness. Gabetta's encore was the Dolcissimo from Pēteris Vasks's Grāmata čellam (1978), a favourite of hers which she does (and vocalises) with impeccable grace and purity, left hand fluttering and contorting along the fingerboard like some bleached prehistoric creature.


With the NHK SO at full strength, violins divided antiphonally, cellos in the middle, double basses raised to the left, Järvi's view of Rachmaninov's Second Symphony explored the lyrical and spacious, steppes and stars before steel. No cuts, first movement exposition repeat, grounded climaxes, leisured rubato, tone and expressivity at a premium, the panorama intent on coaxing and caressing the page. Brashness, aggressive brass, histrionics, grossed-up dynamics, tear-jerking, the introduction clarified early on, weren't the domains he wanted us to visit – even if a bouquet of Valentine tunes was left intact in the Adagio. Landmarks ... First movement – the rits and a tempos, plus added echo three bars in, of the allegro first subject; the moderated drawing out of cadences, holding back before gathering pace, the essence of calando defined; the stopped horns of the development section, and, subsequently, their accented, reiterated offbeat rhythms, forging the argument in ways suddenly, unexpectedly, reminiscent of Schubert's Great C-major finale. Scherzo – a showcase fugato at the meno mosso, easily one of the best I've heard, each string entry tight to the beat, not a suggestion of raggedness, Järvi taut in his actions. And such an attentive glockenspiel player, too, so aware of phrasing and nuance. Third movement – a gloriously cantabile clarinet solo (Kei Ito) melting out of nowhere; high poetry, Michelin-star voicing, at the close. Finale – bells and burnished spurs in the picture, the ending soaring opulently in a corona of grand emotion and thunderous gloire. The kind of performance you think about and remember.

http://www.classicalsource.com/db_control/db_concert_review.php?id=17091

February 24th, Estonian Independence Day. A gentle encore. Kodumaine viis (Homeland Melody) by Järvi's compatriot, Heino Eller (1887-1970), the teacher of Eduard Tubin and Arvo Pärt – written for piano in 1918, revised in 1945, arranged for strings in 1953. Class playing, almost too perfect, a devotional hush silencing the auditorium, Paavo in no rush to break the tension.

Sunday, February 23, 2020

Talking Heads: Paavo Järvi

arcana.fm
Ben Hogwood
23.02.2020





If anyone typifies the flexibility of the modern conductor today, that person is Paavo Järvi. Like his father Neeme and younger brother Kristjan, he has an eye-watering workload and schedule, but such is his deep love for his art that it is not a factor in his musical life.

When our conversation starts, Järvi has just finished rehearsing in Estonia – in his home city of Tallinn. This time his role is that of a visiting conductor, in charge of the NHK Symphony Orchestra. The Japanese group, now 95 years old, appointed him as their chief conductor in 2016 and recently extended the arrangement until 2022. Their recent recording releases present a partnership that can only be described as going from strength to strength.

On the night of our conversation they have a concert in Tallinn itself, followed by a visit to the Royal Festival Hall in London three days later. Their program is an enticing one, beginning with Takemitsu’s orchestral piece How slow the wind. Järvi confesses to being a slow starter with his music. “I have been an admirer of his music for a long time, but recently in the last couple of years we have recorded his works with the orchestra. It has just been released in Japan, and it includes all of his orchestral music. In the last couple of years it was a big project that we took on, especially with him being so big in Japan. He died before I ever had a chance to meet him unfortunately, but as you know he is a major figure in Japanese musical life. His is the only real name from the Western world that we would know as being from Japanese music. I grew up knowing the name but not the music. It’s been a new experience for me but something I am very proud of, a new musical experience.”



One of the NHK Symphony Orchestra’s recent releases with Järvi is a searing account of Mahler’s Symphony no.6, which they gave to great acclaim in London in 2017. Wishful thinking it may be, but I suggest that some of Takemitsu’s writing draws from Mahler’s ability to write chamber-like music in the depths of the Sixth. “I think it is more likely that the influences are Messiaen”, says Järvi, his sonorous voice deeper than ever. “It was Messiaen who taught him, and the line goes back to Debussy before that, but there are echoes of certain other worlds in Takemitsu’s music for sure. Mahler could have been one of them.”

Sol Gabetta joins the orchestra for Schumann’s Cello Concerto, a work which has seen its fortunes on the stage revitalised in more recent years, before Järvi leads the orchestra in Rachmaninov’s Symphony no.2 in E minor. This is a work he recorded with the Cincinnati Symphony Orchestra back in 2006, but as he admits his view of the piece has changed since then. “It has changed, and I have changed in that time too”, he admits. “I have fewer inhibitions since I made that recording, and I am not as cautious about the piece as I used to be. It is one of the most Russian works of Rachmaninov’s output, but it cannot be taken too literally. The orchestra have played the Second quite a lot, and it is extremely familiar music within Japan. There is certain music that they play really well, and the Second Symphony is certainly one of those pieces.”


Nor have they required much persuasion or coaching to make the move to Mahler in their recorded output. “The orchestra is extremely well versed in German Romantic music, and they have had a lot of conductors who have encouraged them to play it. Herbert von Karajan and Karl Böhm used to conduct regularly in Japan, and so did Eugen Jochum. Most of the Western conductors came with their own orchestras. A lot of Western conductors were connected with the NHK Symphony Orchestra – Wolfgang Sawallisch, Herbert Blomstedt and Horst Stein just to name a few – so they know the repertoire extremely well.


Alongside the Mahler release is a programme of Bartók orchestral works, comprising the Divertimento for string orchestra, the Dance Suite and the Music for Strings, Percussion and Celesta. Jarvi prides himself on the output, and the overall orchestral sound, which has an extraordinary clarity. “That’s something we have been trying to get”, he admits, “the directness of sound, so that it is transparent and clear. We had to work on that a bit for the Bartók, but as you can hear the orchestra is very versatile.”

The London leg of the NHK’s mini tour will take place on Estonia’s Independence Day, which Järvi describes as ‘a very nice coincidence’. This helpfully leads me on to a new recording he has made with the Estonian Festival Orchestra of the music of fellow countryman Erkki-Sven Tüür. The main work here is his Symphony no.9, dedicated to Järvi himself, with orchestral pieces Sow the Wind… and Incantation of Tempest.

He describes the new Ninth. “It’s a big piece, and very interesting. It describes the Estonian history from its beginnings right up to today, so it is a very long narrative – but it is very atmospheric too. He (Tüür) is a master of creating great layers of sound. I think it’s an epic piece, and because I have a lot of years performing his music it is very special for me as a culmination with the Estonian Festival Orchestra. It makes it even more special because it is very close to home.”

Järvi’s familiarity with the music of Tüür goes right back to the 1990s, and a disc of new music by him and fellow Estonian contemporaries. “It’s a great place for new music”, says Järvi of his home country. We have a lot of good new music, and established composers like Arvo Pärt and others.” In spite of his worldwide travelling, he keeps up with developments. “ It’s not difficult to keep in touch with the possibilities for Estonia”, he says, “as they are all there with the internet. I am always looking at what’s happening in musical life in Estonia, and even when I am far away my heart is here all the time.”

This year will see the tenth season of the Pärnu festival, founded by Paavo Järvi in 2011 together with his father, Neeme. How does he look to bring new audiences to classical music? “This is what we are always thinking about”, he says with feeling. “I don’t have a magic formula, other than one has to do it really well and be engaged. If the programme is interesting then that is the first important thing. The other thing is to enjoy the music. Very often with orchestras it can look like business as usual, and they play as if they are working.”

That was emphatically not the case with the Estonian Festival Orchestra when they made their BBC Proms debut last August, and who were noticeably all smiles. “I think that’s the way it should be”, says Järvi. “It is very hard for me to imagine playing music and looking like you’re not enjoying it, it’s not logical to me. Orchestras that come together occasionally, like the festival orchestra does, have an advantage, but it has to happen with every orchestra. It’s such a very logical thing, and if you enjoy it makes sense to do something which is very contagious. Energy comes through being contagious!”

The NHK Symphony Orchestra and Paavo Järvi perform Takemitsu, Schumann and Rachmaninov at the Royal Festival Hall on Monday 24 February.

You can listen to the orchestra’s new recordings of Mahler and Bartók on Sony Music on Spotify above, and follow the link to find samples and buying options on the Presto website – the Mahler here and the
Bartók here.

Järvi’s disc of Tüür’s Symphony no.9 will be available on the Alpha label in March – for more details click here

Thursday, February 20, 2020

Monday, February 17, 2020

Meet the Artist – Paavo Järvi

crosseyedpianist.com
17.02.2020



Who or what inspired you to take up conducting and pursue a career in music?

I was born into a family of a conductors, so it was my father.

Who or what are the most significant influences on your musical life?

There have been many influential musicians along the way who have been important influences for me – my father, my teacher Max Rudolf at the Curtis Institute of Music and Leonard Bernstein as far as conductors go. But there have been also influential instrumentalists and composers who have been important in my life, for example Radu Lupu and Arvo Pärt.

What, for you, is the most challenging part of being a conductor? And the most fulfilling aspect?


Every part of conductor’s life is challenging. From the enormity of the repertoire to the geography and travel.

The most fulfilling aspect is that a conductor can spend his or her life with talented human beings and explore music of geniuses like Mahler and Beethoven, for example

As a conductor, how do you communicate your ideas about a work to the orchestra?

One communicates ideas through various methods – with the eyes, verbally, with gestures and body language.

How exactly do you see your role? Inspiring the players/singers? Conveying the vision of the composer?

I see my role as a medium between the composer and the musicians. The role is to formulate a point of view about the piece through study of the score and to convey this to the musicians.

Is there one work which you would love to conduct?
There are many works I would love to conduct but one lifetime is not enough to get close to all the masterpieces in the repertoire.

Do you have a favourite concert venue in which to perform?

The Zürich Tonhalle, Suntory Hall in Tokyo, the Musikverein in Vienna, just to name a few.

Who are your favourite musicians/composers?

Hard to name a favourite composer but I do have a soft spot for music of Sibelius and Bruckner.

As a musician, what is your definition of success?

Success is when you can make music on the highest possible level with like-minded musicians.

What do you consider to be the most important ideas and concepts to impart to aspiring musicians?
Make sure you love music enough to make it your profession and then be prepared to work very hard.

Where would you like to be in 10 years’ time?


On the planet Earth.

What is your idea of perfect happiness?


I think it would be the balance between personal and professional life.

What is your present state of mind?


I’m looking forward to the upcoming tour to Europe with the NHK Symphony Orchestra, Tokyo

Paavo Järvi conducts the NHK Symphony Orchestra in music by Takemitsu, Rachmaninov and Schumann at London’s Royal Festive val Hall on 24 February. Full details

(Artist photo: Julia Baier)'

Friday, February 14, 2020

Paavo Järvi conducts orchestral works by Bartók

prestomusic.com
James Longstaffe
14.02.2020

Since 2016, the Chief Conductor of the NHK Symphony Orchestra, Tokyo has been Paavo Järvi, and together they have made several acclaimed recordings of music by Mahler and Richard Strauss. Now comes their most accomplished album yet of three works by Bartók: alongside characterful accounts of the Divertimento and the Dance Suite they offer an unsettlingly eerie performance of the Music for Strings, Percussion and Celesta.

The orchestra has over the years attracted an impressive list of previous conductors, including Vladimir Ashkenazy, Wolfgang Sawallisch, Charles Dutoit, and André Previn, and it only takes a few moments of listening to them to understand why: the sound they make is really rather beautiful, especially in the string section, which plays with great finesse. In fact, so technically polished are they that sometimes this can be detrimental: in an interview with my colleague Katherine, Järvi commented that when performing music such as Stravinsky and Bartók he would often have to ask the orchestra to stop sounding so beautiful and to make their playing much uglier! Although I feel they could have gone even further in a few places, the results of this attention to quality of sound are most evident, particularly the opening of the Music for Strings, Percussion and Celesta, where the muted violas bring a detached coldness that is quite unnerving.

The whole first movement is extremely intense; the tension builds as more and more string parts enter, but even with multiple independent lines going on, you can hear with absolute transparency each and every one of them. Again in that interview, Järvi mentions how important clarity and precision are to this orchestra, and there’s no better example of that than here.

For me, the highlight of both the piece and this recording has to be the third movement: with its desolate, repeated xylophone notes, timpani glissandos, and harsh, angular string writing, it’s an extraordinarily creepy movement full of quiet despair. It’s hard to describe in words, but the passage about two and a half minutes in where pianissimo trills and a chain of ascending and descending glissando wails from the violins accompany a chromatic melody from celesta and two solo violins, punctuated by implacable major sevenths from the piano, is so disturbing and chilling that I’m not sure it’s the sort of thing I would want to listen to in the dark! It's no surprise that Stanley Kubrick chose this precise section of the piece for part of the soundtrack to The Shining.

Especially in this piece, Järvi often takes a relatively expansive view on tempos (Bartók actually gives quite detailed breakdowns of the timing of movements here and in the Divertimento for string orchestra, which admittedly Järvi frequently exceeds, but then very few other recordings get anywhere near either!), but this is all for the very good reason of allowing the music the space it needs. Not once did I feel that the pace was sluggish or dragging in any way, it was simply a pleasure to wallow in the tremendous sounds that the NHK players were making.

The versatility that the orchestra possesses is amply demonstrated in the Divertimento, where they are adept at navigating its changing moods: the opening is full of richness and depth, and yet they bring a huge amount of grace and deftness when required. I can’t say enough good things about this recording: the variety of sounds that they make is nothing short of stunning, turning from the gentlest of pianissimos to the most ferocious of fortissimos with great ease. I hope you enjoy it as much as I have!


 Bartók: Music for Strings, Percussion and Celesta, Divertimento & Dance Suite


NHK Symphony Orchestra, Paavo Järvi

Available Formats: CD, MP3, FLAC, Hi-Res FLAC

https://www.prestomusic.com/classical/articles/3127--recording-of-the-week-paavo-jarvi-conducts-orchestral-works-by-bartok

Thursday, February 13, 2020

Paavo Järvi on the NHK Symphony Orchestra

prestomusic.com
Katherine Cooper
13.02.2020


Photo credit: Kaupo Kikkas.

Since being appointed Chief Conductor of the NHK Symphony Orchestra in late 2016, Paavo Järvi has programmed a significant amount of twentieth-century and contemporary music as well as conducting acclaimed performances of their trademark German Romantic repertoire in Japan and across Europe, and this month sees the release of a slew of new recordings including works by Mahler, Strauss, Bartók, Wagner and Mussorgsky. I met up with him recently in London to discuss the orchestra’s special qualities, extending the comfort-zones of players and audiences alike, and why he believes that ‘a good young conductor is an oxymoron’…

Do you rehearse in English, Japanese, or a mixture of both?


We work mostly in English, with a couple of German and Italian words thrown in, and occasionally a very basic Japanese phrase from me! But very often I just sing – not necessarily because of any language-problem, but because you can communicate far more by singing a line than by getting into long involved philosophical discussions. (In fact I think that’s sound advice for any conductor anywhere!). If you go in with a strong enough view of something and if you are connected to the players then it’s relatively easy to get your point across, and I’ve seen that with visiting soloists too - Truls Mørk did an incredible Don Quixote with us recently, and just the way he played it made everybody adapt to his view of the piece.


Are there significant differences between Japanese and European orchestral culture – both in terms of players’ backgrounds and audience expectations?


Very much so. Even though the NHK musicians have often studied in the US and in Europe (a lot of the younger musicians in particular are German-educated), they still need to function in an extremely well-defined Japanese culture, and there are certain things that are simply non-negotiable. They are taught that there is a right thing and there’s a wrong thing, so sometimes when I spontaneously ask for something in the rehearsal – say, for a piano to be marked slightly up for a particular instrument - I can see them checking the score and thinking ‘But that’s not what Mahler [or whoever] writes!’. And I’ll say ‘Look, I understand that it’s marked piano, but in this context we need a little bit more of your voice because it’s all relative - a tuba piano is going to be a bit louder than a clarinet piano’.

There’s also an intense hierarchy at work in orchestras, as in Japanese society, so there is a very specific road which you have to follow in order to progress in your career. And it's a slightly conservative culture, so when it comes to programming, something like Bartók is considered ‘new’ music. Takemitsu (whose music we recorded recently) is rather different, because that’s a matter of national pride, rather as Arvo Pärt is for us in Estonia. There are some very good Japanese composers like Toshio Hosokawa who are making a significant name for themselves, but Takemitsu is the only one who's truly internationally-known and he’s taken on an almost legendary status for them. Without that national connection they might not necessarily take his music to their heart in the same way: if you programme Hindemith or Lutosławski, for instance, there is a hardcore fan-base who’ll be totally into it, but your typical audience-member really wants Beethoven, Brahms, Schubert, Mahler and Bruckner…Germanic music, essentially.


When and how do you think that preference developed?


I think the Japanese interest in Western classical music really started when Karajan first visited with the Berliner Philharmoniker in the 1950s, and it’s that sort of repertoire that remains central. In the 60s, 70s and 80s NHK worked with a lot of German conductors, but in the recent past they had Vladimir Ashkenazy and Charles Dutoit as music directors - so two very great musicians who didn’t necessarily concentrate on the Germanic core repertoire. Ashkenazy in particular was less interested in doing Beethoven, Mahler and Bruckner than exploring more esoteric repertoire which really fascinated him, which I think is absolutely the right approach and really broadened their range. These days they play Tchaikovsky and other Russian composers all the time, but the prevailing belief is still that the ‘real’ music is Germanic, and that the real conductors are the old Germans and Austrians. Anybody old is preferred, but especially if they’re Old World. And I think they have that age thing exactly right: in the West we have this obsession with young conductors, but to me a ‘good young conductor’ is an oxymoron! Conducting is a profession of experience, so there are young conductors who are talented, promising or exciting, but really ‘good’? I don’t think so. (Having said that there are also very many bad old conductors, but that’s a different issue!). The Japanese culture is built on old masters and apprenticeship: instead of starting out by expressing your own opinions you copy everything the master does stroke-by-stroke, and once you’re able to do that then you can become your own man. That’s exactly how Japanese society works, and to me there’s a very clear logic to it.


Given that slight cultural conservatism which you mentioned, is it a challenge to get the ugliness and wildness that you often need for Stravinsky and Bartók?

Ugliness and wildness are not easy to come by anywhere these days! Wherever you do Rite of Spring now it always sounds too beautiful, too polished and too easy: it used to be so difficult for people to read that that added a kind of nervous tension in itself, but today everyone plays it so well and so often that you almost feel that there’s no longer anything really scary about it. (I find something similar with Bruckner’s scherzos at times: you have something that’s supposed to sound like a heavy-footed Ländler but what you end up with is an elegant Viennese waltz...). The technical capacity of NHK is unsurpassed, to me – I don’t know any other orchestra that can play that precisely, so very often I would have to stop and say ‘This is too beautiful! It has to be much more brutish!’, and they’d do it and look shyly at each other as if to say ‘Is this OK?! We sound so ugly!’. Sometimes I had to practically beg them to make more unsophisticated sounds.


The orchestra has quite a substantial Strauss discography, but as far as I can see this new recording of the Sixth is their first commercial Mahler recording...

They’d never recorded any Mahler before as far as I’m aware, which is surprising given how often they play his music - I’ve done all of the symphonies with NHK, and they’ve acquired such a reputation in this repertoire that we’ve had to turn down a few requests from guest conductors who wanted to come and do it as well! We don’t plan to record a complete cycle, because there are so many other pieces which I think they would do incredibly well, such as the Turangalîla-Symphonie. And another priority was the Bartók recording, which has always been my dream because Music for Strings, Percussion and Celesta and the Divertimento and the Dance Suite don’t often get to be on the same disc: I think that particular combination was kind of shocking to the musicians, but boy they played it well! It’s amazing how well they actually play this repertoire, and I think that’s partly because clarity and precision are incredibly important for the Japanese. If you really listen carefully to even the greatest European orchestras, you find that a lot of things are done fairly approximately, but with the Japanese you can hear every line.


Is the Suntory Hall acoustic conducive to that clarity?


Oh yes, environment is everything. All our NHK recordings are done there and it’s one of the best natural acoustics in the world – artificial acoustics are often used in recordings, but we don’t have to do that so much because the hall itself is so fantastic. It’s become one of the venues everybody wants to go to, in a way that really helps us.


The orchestra recorded a lot of Italian opera in the mid-twentieth century – has that fallen out of vogue, or would you consider exploring that with them in future?


I’d love to do that kind of stuff, but there's so much I’d love to do and so little time! In terms of opera, the preference is for Wagner, as Italian repertoire is pretty well covered by imported productions and visiting companies: smaller Italian houses like Torino (and sometimes even La Scala) regularly come out and do a whole month of verismo or bel canto, so there’s definitely a market for it but NHK are fundamentally a symphonic orchestra and it's not quite in their DNA.


What else is on your twentieth-century repertoire wish-list with NHK?

I’d like to do Nielsen and Sibelius – not the popular Sibelius symphonies like 2 and 5, but some of the others. They play some of the popular Prokofiev and Shostakovich pieces (things like Romeo and Juliet and the Fifth Symphony) but there’s a lot of wonderful music by those two that isn’t programmed so often. We recently played a programme of Polish music which included Bacewicz’s Concerto for Strings, Lutosławski’s Concerto for Orchestra and Little Suite, and the Wieniawski Violin Concerto No. 2: it was very difficult to convince people that they needed to play or hear Bacewicz but once they got going they loved it, and I think that was the first time ever that her music was played in Japan. I also plan to do some Sven-Erkki Tüür, and Hans Abrahamsen’s new Horn Concerto, which was premiered by the Berliner Philharmoniker last month and was co-commissioned with NHK. And the next recording that’s coming out is more Stravinsky: the Symphony in Three Movements, Jeu de Cartes and Apollon musagète, which is an interesting combination in that it’s all dance music – if the Ballets Russes inspired the Diaghilev pieces, then these three are pure Balanchine.

Paavo Järvi & the NHK Symphony Orchestra perform Takemitsu, Schumann and Rachmaninov at South Bank Centre on Monday 24th February as part of the Japan-UK Season of Culture 2019-2020.

https://www.prestomusic.com/classical/articles/3122--interview-paavo-jarvi-on-the-nhk-symphony-orchestra

Wednesday, February 12, 2020

PÄRNU MUSIC FESTIVAL 2020 - Familienbande

concerti.de
Peter Krause
12.02.2020

Die Dirigentendynastie der Järvis führt in Estland mit dem Pärnu Music Festival Orchestermusiker aus Ost und West zu einem Weltklasse-Klangkörper zusammen.


© Kaupo Kikkas
Paavo Järvi am Strand von Pärnu

Sanft streift der Seewind über die Dünen des gigantisch breiten und extra feinkörnigen Sandstrands. Dahinter laden schattige Park­anlagen zum Lustwandeln während der Siesta-Zeit. Davor wird die einst die Schiffe der Hanse einladende, gut geschützte Bucht von Pärnu zum Kinderparadies, denn so seicht und sicher nimmt die Ostsee sonst nirgends an Tiefe zu. Der Weg zum Schwimmen gleicht einer wohligen Wasserwanderung. Die gute alte Sommer­frische, als Ferienbegriff sonst etwas aus der Mode gekommen, wird hier fürwahr Ereignis. Zumal die Küste der viertgrößten Stadt Estlands nicht durch massentouristische Ferienkomplexe verschandelt ist, sondern sich ihren Charme eines Kurorts des 19. Jahrhunderts bewahrt hat.


Der Kursaal mit Konzertmuschel wurde erhalten, die Jugendstil- und Bauhaus-Villen aus der ersten Phase estnischer Unabhängigkeit zwischen den Weltkriegen aufwändig herausgeputzt, das angestaubte Kurort-Image liebevoll sensibel in die moderne Spa-Welt überführt. In manchen der schnuckeligen nordischen Holzhäuschen haben sich Buchantiquariate, Kaffeehäuser und Pizzerien angesiedelt. Der Transformations­prozess vom Sozialismus in die Gegenwart erfolgte sensibel, geschichtsbewusst und beherzt zugleich; der kluge junge Bürgermeister, der zum Studium in England weilte, steht beispielhaft dafür, dass die alten sozialistischen Eliten hier nichts mehr zu sagen haben, Investitionen nicht in dubiosen Kanälen versickern, sondern zum Wohle von Land und Leuten eingesetzt werden.


© Indrek Aija

Spielstätte beim Pärnu Music Festival: Villa Ammende

Europäischer Sprachenmix und Tiefenentspannung

Die Strategie zeigt Wirkung: Die Hotels sind voll. Besonders die finnischen Nachbarn haben die estnische Küste für sich entdeckt, doch längst zeugt ein europäischer Sprachenmix davon, dass Entspannung hier ein Prinzip ist, dem all jene Urlaubs­hungrigen folgen, denen der Süden zu heiß und zu laut, der Norden hingegen zu langweilig oder zu teuer ist.

Schließlich zeugt die Perle Pärnu vom kulturellen Reichtum und wiedergewonnen Bewusstsein Estlands. Ein zarter Hauch von westlicher Freiheit wehte hier freilich bereits, als Sowjet­spitzel noch das Leben im Riesenreich verfinsterten. So wussten Komponistengenie Dmitri Schostakowitsch oder Geigenlegende David Oistrach die Oase namens Pärnu zu schätzen, sie kehrten Sommer für Sommer hierher zurück. Die privaten, oft spontan anberaumten Kammermusik­abende Oistrachs, der Studenten und Musikerfreunde gern in seine grün angestrichene Datscha lud, gehören denn auch zur Inspirationsquelle für Paavo Järvi, den Ort, an dem er einst als Kind dem großen Schostakowitsch vorgestellt wurde, in eine Art musikalisches Sommercamp zu verwandeln. So ging 2011 das erste Pärnu Music Festival über die Bühne, im August 2020 steht nun das Jubiläum mit der zehnten Ausgabe an.


Die Rückkehr der Järvis in ihre Heimat hat auch eine dezidiert politische Dimension. Sie ist Statement. Denn die Dirigentendynastie gehört zu den berühmtesten Exilanten des kleinen Estland. Neeme Järvi emigrierte mit Frau und Kindern in 1980ern in die USA, er selbst stieg zu einem Dirigenten-Weltstar auf, seine Söhne studierten in der Neuen Welt. Heute hat das Oberhaupt der Musikerfamilie längst wieder einen Wohnsitz in der Hauptstadt Tallin, weitere Mitglieder der Järvis sind in ihre Heimat zurückgekehrt. Der Braindrain, mithin der gefährliche Abfluss von meist jungen Talenten als Kennzeichen der einstigen Sowjet­länder, er scheint hier nun nicht nur gestoppt, er kehrt sich um. Denn die Lebensqualität in Estland stimmt, die Altlasten der Diktatur sind weitgehend beseitigt, russische Müllkippen wurden in blühende Naturschutzgebiete zurückverwandelt. Sogar das ein Viertel der Stadtbevölkerung fassende Plattenbau-Trabantenviertel von Pärnu wurde aufgehübscht und hat heute längst westlichen Wohnstandard erreicht.


© Toomas Olev

Eine der schönsten barocken Kirchen Estlands: die Elisabeth-Kirche
Mitunter ist Talent erblich

Das Festival seinerseits ist Ausfluss der Familienbande. Opa Neeme sowie die Brüder Kristjan und Paavo geben gemeinsam ihr Wissen an Nachwuchsdirigenten weiter, die mit dem besonders jung und besonders exzellent mit estnischen Musikern besetzten Akademie­orchester arbeiten können und die Ergebnisse der Meisterklassen dann in einem beim Pu­blikum überaus beliebten Abschluss­konzert präsentieren. Und im eigentlichen Festivalorchester versammeln sich neben Paavo Järvis Lieblingsmusikern aus der Kammer­philharmonie Bremen, dem Frankfurter Radiosinfonie­orchester, den Münchner Philharmonikern und dem NDR Elbphilharmonie Orchester oder den großen russischen Klangkörpern natürlich auch die besten Musiker Estlands, darunter so manche, die wiederum auf den Nachnamen Järvi hören. Mitunter ist Talent eben erblich.
Entdeckerfreude beim Pärnu Music Festival

Damit die im Klassikbetrieb der Großstädte gefährliche Routine hier ein absolutes Fremdwort bleibt, setzt Paavo nicht die Schlachtrösser von „Pathétique“ oder Fünfter von ­Tschaikowsky auf das Programm des Festival­orchesters, sondern im vergangenen Jahr etwa dessen Sinfonie Nr. 2, die kaum jemand im Orchester je gespielt hat. Gemeinsame Neugierde, Maximal­motivation, Entdeckerfreude prägen das Weltklasseensemble. Das gewählte Repertoire spiegelt zudem die Einflüsse, die hier wirksam wurden: russische und deutsche Komponisten, dazu jene Meister der Gegenwart, die der estnischen Erde entstammen und ganz große Musik schaffen: Altmeister Arvo Pärt und der mit seinen sechzig Jahren jung gebliebene, persönlich anwesende Erkki-Sven Tüür zählen zu diesen Neutönern, deren Werke von den Festivalfans mit nicht weniger kennerischem Beifall bedacht werden wie jene des Dänen Carl Nielsen oder des Böhmen Antonín Dvořák, dessen Cellokonzert der norwegische Stargast Truls Mørk so gar nicht als Star, sondern als Erster unter Gleichen mit warm abschattiertem und mit der dunklen Streicherglut des Orchesters intim abgemischtem Ton spielt.

Pärnu Music Festival
16.-23.7.2020
Mit: PaavoJärvi, Truls Mørk, Hugo Ticciati, Estonian Festival Orchestra u.a.
Pärnu, Tallinn

Friday, February 07, 2020

Igor Levit und Ludwig van Beethoven: Sondersendung zum 250. Geburtstag

zdf.de
7.02.2020





Beethoven der Rebell

Sein Vermächtnis: Die 9. Sinfonie
Quelle: Kaupo Kikkas

Als er diese Sinfonie komponiert ist Beethoven schon komplett taub. Die Sopranistin der Uraufführung muss den Komponisten, der sein Werk selbst dirigiert hat und mit dem Rücken zum Publikum steht, herumdrehen, damit er beim Schlussapplaus mit eigenen Augen sehen kann, wie begeistert das Publikum auf die letzte Sinfonie des Meisters reagiert. Die „Ode an die Freude“ hat es zu besonderer Berühmtheit gebracht. Bei Weltgeschichtlichen Anlässen spielt man vor allem diese Melodie – und sie passt in jedes politische Portfolio: Stalin wünschte sich 1936 eine Aufführung der Neunten zur Feier seiner totalitären Verfassung. Furtwängler dirigierte sie 1937 zu Führers Geburtstag. 1949 zierte sie die Gründungsfeiern der DDR. 1972 dann wird sie zur offiziellen Europahymne. Mit dem Dirigenten Paavo Järvi schauen wir ins musikalische Detail und fragen: Wie sehr glaubte Beethoven selbst daran, dass alle Menschen Brüder werden?

Tuesday, February 04, 2020

Schwärzeste aller Mahlersinfonien

concerti.de
Frank Armbruster
4.02.2020




Das NHK Symphony Orchestra unter der Leitung von Paavo Järvi spielt Mahlers Sechste auf einem technisch extrem hohen Level.



Früher gab es Bruckner- und Mahlerdirigenten – und nur sehr wenige, die sich gleichermaßen beiden Komponisten nahe fühlten. Heute ist das anders. Der Este Paavo Järvi etwa hat mit dem hr-Sinfonieorchester den kompletten Mahler und das meiste von Bruckner eingespielt, und das auf sehr hohem Niveau. Dass es aber offenbar noch besser geht, zeigt Järvi nun mit der Einspielung von Mahlers Sechster mit dem NHK Symphony Orchestra. Nicht nur spielt das Orchester aus Tokio auf einem technisch extrem hohen Level, fabelhaft ist die Homogenität der Klanggruppen. Auch was strukturelle Durchgestaltung und emotionale Dringlichkeit anbelangt, muss man lange suchen, um Vergleichbares zu finden. Järvi trifft den Kern dieser vielleicht schwärzesten aller Mahlersinfonien und bündelt deren divergente Stränge in einem Finale von existenzieller Wucht, bei dem die Hammerschläge wie Detonationen die Welt erschüttern und aus den Angeln heben.


© Kaupo Kikkas


Paavo Järvi

Mahler: Sinfonie Nr. 6 „Tragische“

NHK Symphony Orchestra, Paavo Järvi (Leitung)
RCA
Paavo Järvi

Er hat den Rhythmus im Blut und ist in seinem Dirigierstil dennoch vielmehr eleganter Gentleman als Haudrauf: Paavo Järvi. Als Sohn einer Dirigentenfamilie – Vater Neeme, Onkel Vallo und Bruder Kristjän gehen derselben Berufung nach… weiter


https://www.concerti.de/rezensionen/paavo-jaervi-mahler-sinfonie-6-tragische/