Jaap van Zweden Conducts Prokofiev and Mahler

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Thursday, June 02, 2016

Music Director Jaap van Zweden conducts the Dallas Symphony Orchestra Maestro Jaap van Zweden, the next music director of the New York Philharmonic.

Thursday at 9 pm, get a glimpse into the future of the New York Philharmonic, as the incoming music director, Jaap van Zweden, leads the orchestra in Prokofiev and Mahler. The program opens with the thrilling pianist Yuja Wang performing Prokofiev's Piano Concerto No. 3, which the composer wrote in 1921. Mahler's First Symphony, "Titan," rounds out this episode. 

Program Playlist:

Prokofiev: Piano Concerto No. 3
Mahler: Symphony No. 1

Conductor: Jaap van Zweden
Soloist: Yuja Wang, piano

Comments [1]

Les from Miami, Florida

This re-broadcast of a concert given on 12 April 2012 again gave us another opportunity to hear Ms. Wang's debut with the Orchestra and Mr. van Zweden with knowledge he will be the next music director. I admit I looked askance upon the pairing of Prokofieff with Mahler, but hearing their two "worlds" together didn't detract from either's messages as I first thought. Ms. Wang's performance of the Prokofieff Third Concerto is one I've never heard bettered, my references being Dimitri Mitropoulos as soloist and guest conductor of the NBC Symphony and John Browning with Erich Leinsdorf conducting the Philharmonia of London. My only reservation about her performance is that I thought the grace notes in the sequence at number 12 (Kalmus pocket edition) weren't accented or articulated loud enough, the mordant humor and irony seemed less apparent therefrom. Mr. van Zweden has a wonderful way of balancing the ensemble, first apparent in the divided srings that immediately follow the clarinets' solos. Variation IV in the slow movement did give the impression of time standing still; and the requisite bravura and slancio were present in the last movement. The Mahler First Symphony again showed the Maestro's keen sense of balance from the first sounds of divided strings sounding A over the five octaves, to the long crescendo sequences in woodwinds, strings and brass at number 25 (Kalmus full score) in the first movement, to the "accelerando al fine", 4 bars after number 32 till the movement's conclusion. Mr. van Zweden has a tendency to linger during subsidiary melodic material, such as at number 10 in the third movement, the enharmonic modulation from d minor to G major, but Mahler lived in a time less rushed than ours, so I doubt he would have raised an eyebrow over such. The last movement evoked the same impresssions I've already written about. On my wish list for Mr. van Zweden's programs is his performing Villa-Lobos's "Bachianas Brasileiras Number 3" with Ms. Wang, essentially a piano concerto and a large work by a Mahler contemporary such as Zemlinsky's "Lyric Symphony" with a relative rarity by Schreker: "The Birthday of the Infanta" Suite.

Jun. 05 2016 02:49 PM

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