Saturday, October 26, 2013

Cleveland Orchestra: Fate and Freedom

Beethoven: Symphony No. 5 in C minor, Op. 76
Shostakovich: Symphony No. 10 in E minor, Op. 93
Franz Welser-Most, conductor.

This week has been disruptive to say the least -- while I spent the majority of the week in Palm Beach and am preparing to head to Richmond for a full week tomorrow, all amidst the emotional devastation brought upon many close to me by the news of David Franklin's--er..."recklessness" as one friend put it.

Though I arrive home lat last night, I'm heading to Ricnmond tomorrow afternoon and between valuing wwhat time I have at home and the relative disfavor with which I hold Mr. Welser-Most's conducting plus my lack of enthusiasm for Beethoven, had the program been presented Shostakovitch first I likely would have called it during intermission 

I'm glad that wasn't the case, however, as Mr. Welser-Most seemed particulally relaxed and avoided the overly-restrained, stiff, feeling that I get too often. Instead the.Beethoven was wonderful full-bodied and immersive, completely pulling me into the supple piece. While the first movement was vigerous and full of young life, the second had a mich more tender and loving feeling. The thord and fourth movementa meanwhile had a more timid, soft spoken feeling before erupting like a superhero tearing off his disguise.

The Shostakovich, was on the other hand, significantly less captivating primarily for the overwhelming bleakness -- like a Cleveland winter, mostly depressing with little spots of sunshine.  The intense strings brought a profound sense of foreboding and the militaristic feel if the secon movement. The third and fourth movements had a very tentative and cautions feeling to them.


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