13 October 2011

Victor's Review: Zeitouni's Off the Fucking Hook! - Post 15

I think the title says it all!  For the past few years, I've seen either the opening or closing show for our incredibly talented and very own Columbus Symphony - this year, I decided to go full in and purchase a subscriber package for all the Masterworks shows at Ohio Theatre.  Based on the opening performance, I'm not going to be disappointed.

The house was packed!  Hands down, this was the most people I've seen for a Masterworks show since I've been going.

There were three pieces to this evening's show.  Conductor / Music Director Jean-Marie Zeitouni opened the season with the US National Anthem (orchestrated by none other than legendary composer Igor Stravinsky).  This was a great, slow, well arranged version that the audience seemed to enjoy.

The second piece of the evening was a composition from 2000 by the American composer Jennifer Higdon (NYC) called blue cathedral.  blue cathedral was a beautiful example of how unexpected modern compositions can be.  Bear in mind, I'm not a musician - so eloquent in my review, I may not be...  Soft chimes open the piece and chimes and bells have a prominent place throughout the composition.  It gradually builds with the second section being very reminiscent of most large and well known pieces from the early 1800s before growing quiet and evocative of a grand funeral.  When the "funeral" is over, the piece again grows upbeat, the chimes and bells return and there's a very light, ephemeral feel to the end of it.  Cheery.  Happy - as if the "funeral" is a beginning to something more.

Finally, the show stopper, the ultimate rocker, the peak of German grandiosity - Carmina BuranaCarl Orff's (Munich, Germany) epic 1935-36 cantata based on the 13th century collection of Latin, German & French poems and songs by the same title.  Bookended by the instantly recognizable "O Fortuna!" this... wow!  Maestro Zeitouni did something to this work (which I love and have listened to versions from the London Symphony Orchastra & U.C. Davis, as well as the ballet "Carmina Burana") that I've never heard before.  There was a complexity & depth to this dearly beloved classic work that I've not seen in any production of it previously. Zeitouni was incredibly expressive and passionately into the work, singing along to every syllable of the composition and showing the physicality of some of the better conductors I've seen.  I'd put him on par with Alondra de la Parra as far as looking physically exhausted upon completion of the evening.

Just, wow!  This is going to be an insanely epic season & I KNOW I'm not going to have any regrets about becoming a subscriber and supporting our CSO.

No comments:

Post a Comment

Post a Comment