Kirill Petrenko and the Berlin Philharmonic ignite the symphonic return



The last time we had the chance to applaud Kirill Petrenko, on July 31, he bid farewell to the Munich Opera after the final performance of Tristan and Isolde by Wagner, under the sign of musical achievement brought to its peak. Artists and public alike celebrated this discreet but smiling man with a single outburst, offering him songs and waltz from Richard Strauss’s Chevalier à la rose, as a tribute of admiration as well as affection.

→ READ. Munich, opera house of kings and queens

A few weeks later, this time at the head of the Berliner Philharmoniker, of which he has been the musical director for two years, the conductor of Russian origin completed a European tour (Salzburg, Lucerne, etc.) which took him to the Philharmonie de Paris, these Saturday 4 and Sunday 5 September. The summer temperatures and the joy of hearing, in full gauge, one of the most beautiful international symphonic formations illuminated the eyes of the spectators above their masks.

Weber and Schubert

The caress of the brass and the frieze of the strings ofOverture of Obéron by Carl Maria von Weber, quickly transformed this satisfaction into pure bliss. As if, in barely ten minutes, Kirill Petrenko and his Berlin instrumentalists had invited all the intoxication and all the magical sensations of the world to invade the Porte de Pantin.

In the interviews which accompany the retransmission of the concerts of the Berlin Philharmonic on its “Digital Hall”, the conductor does not hesitate to describe this overture as “an absolute masterpiece”. He infuses him with such drama, such flights and such expressive expansions that we fully adhere to his opinion. Centerpiece of this first evening, the vast and ample 9th Symphony de Schubert conceals similar treasures, inviting you to explore the woods, valleys and mountains of Austria, all vibrant with natural life and human activity.

Water and fire

The two concerts will have affirmed the aesthetic options of the musician and his orchestra. Among them, the desire, on the one hand, to highlight forgotten works and composers and, on the other hand, to frequent forays into the Russian repertoire. Little known to the public, the very attractive Symphonic metamorphoses on Weber’s themes by Paul Hindemith and metaphysics Summer tale by Josef Suk allowed the Berliner Philharmoniker to deploy their inexhaustible sound resources, as these scores combine the water and fire of orchestral writing.

Kirill Petrenko puts Beethoven in the spotlight

Exploring the borders between silence and “pianississimo”, or conversely seeking dazzling nuances but without ever crossing the limit of “too strong”, the conductor also offers Emmanuel Pahud’s flute (Hindemith), English horn by Dominik Wollenweber and oboe by Jonathan Kelly (Suk), their moment of grace and glory. Kirill Petrenko devotes a faithful tenderness to the work of Josef Suk whose orchestral lace requires high-level performers. Psychological and existential itinerary, A summer tale makes us travel from distress, haunted by hallucinated visions, to an almost mystical calm when night returns.

Mother Russia

The exciting, heartbreaking and so romantic Opening-fantasy of Romeo and Juliet by Tchaikovsky and the petulant 1st Piano Concerto de Prokofiev affirm, them, the predilection of Kirill Petrenko for his musical “family tree”.

Here, the amorous effusions under the gaze of death and the irrational violence between Capulet and Montaigu take on accents of such nobility that we instantly forget so many less held and less Shakespearean interpretations of this famous page.

As for the concerto, served by the unstoppable virtuosity and the mischievous playing, player, even rebellious, of Anna Vinnitskaya, it sounds like a shattering and inventive entry into the career of a twenty-year-old Prokofiev, brimming with energy and, already , high proficiency. And the whole Philharmonie de Paris to rejoice!

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