Wednesday, July 15, 2009

Charles Dutoit and Yuja Wang at the NSO

Or, rather, shall I say Yuja Wang and Charles Dutoit? Well, the first piece I heard (was late, you know) was Prokofiev’s Piano Concerto No. 2 in G minor, Op. 16. About Yuja Wang, the words that come to mind are fierce, passionate, gentle, wild, completely in control… when she finished playing, the crowd literally threw themselves into shouts, ovations; instantaneously jumped to their feet. She is only 21, and you wouldn’t say that - mature playing; she is fierce, and looking at her, you couldn’t tell; she is strong and, by looking at her, you could tell, but also realize that she is small and frail; a delicate combination that, to my mind, is encountered at its best in Asian women. Another thing one could say is that Prokofiev’s second piano concerto was indeed the tight piece: savage, idiosyncratic, fabulous, outrageous, seductive, and also an ocassion to wildly show off. No wonder Prokofiev was an admirer of Liszt. I was thinking that she would make a great Liszt interpreter - so imagine how easy it was to engage later in impulse shopping, when I saw her CD they were selling, on which she was playing - indeed! - Liszt, and also Ligeti.
Then, the last piece of the concert was from Stravinsky, The Firebird - the complete ballet. What a charming; visually stimulating; captivating, amusing and frightening; grandiose at times, and then at other, delicate - piece; a charming fairytale, surely.
I liked Dutoit’s conducting style, I liked especially the type of dynamism he exhibited, his passionate yet reserved style. He is, by the way, one of the big names; the long list of awards he holds emphasize that.
[Saturday, Feb. 21, 2009]

No comments:

Post a Comment