In April 1800, the young Ludwig van Beethoven played his Piano Concerto No. 1 in the Vienna Court Theater. In 1839 Felix Mendelssohn Bartholdy conducted the premiere of Schubert’s Great Symphony in C major as the Gewandhaus Kapellmeister in Leipzig. These are events in music history between the Classical and Romantic periods that a program by the Deutsches Symphonie-Orchester brings together.
The Russian Maxim Emelyanychev, who at the age of 33 conducts an Italian baroque ensemble and succeeds Robin Ticciati, the Scottish Chamber Orchestra, makes his debut at the DSO. A conductor with electrifying charisma: Without a baton, his hands model melodies, bows and the smallest figurations as delicate fingerwork to convey his elementary joy in the blissful sound.
Emelyanychev conducts the score practically by heart, skipping many pages between movements. Having emerged as a pianist with Mozart and experienced in early music, he is now standing in front of a DSO in a well-rounded cast, the six double basses lined up behind the wind instruments. The orchestra follows him with enthusiasm, his signs are a warm invitation.
She goes to the horns in the slow introduction to the Schubert symphony, to the three trombones with their famous passages in the first movement, the delicate woodwind solos. Likewise, the strings unfold lyrical singing in the second movement. The Maestro visibly enjoys Ländlerglück in the Scherzo, while in the finale he knows how to counteract the temptation to noisy exuberance in good time.
As in that Leipzig concert under Mendelssohn, the DSO combines the symphony with Mendelssohn’s own overture to Victor Hugo’s “Ruy Blas”. A rewarding piece that the composer enjoyed even though he found the drama “quite abhorrent”. Inserted into the historical program, the early Beethoven concerto can be heard in the Philharmonie. Soloist Francesco Piemontesi uses it not only as a scope for his brilliant virtuosity, but also as a model for finely tuned interplay with the orchestra. Often canceled in times of the pandemic, the encore is allowed this time. Piemontesi inspires with a piece from Debussy’s “Images”.
Source From: Tagesspiegel