Gewandhausorchester Leipzig at Barbican with Herbert Blomstedt
First concert of the visiting orchestras series at the Barbican this season. And what an orchestra: Gewandhausorchester Leipzig, the oldest in active civil orchestra. Also was of the oldest conductors: Herbert Blomstedt. One more perk: the not so frequently programmed Beethoven triple concerto with three front line soloists: Leonidas Kavakos, Gautier Capuçon and Kirill Gerstein (that’s why is not so frequent, paying three soloists is much more expensive). And the final one was having Bruckner 7th symphony, which was premiered by this very same orchestra.
We had full house at the Barbican and according to the amount of coughs in between movements probably full of not usual concert-goers.
Coupling Kavakos and Capuçon for Beethoven triple concerto was a clever idea: they both have a very powerful sound so they balanced very well. In the same sense Gerstein was smart retraining himself of having too much prominence (the one that a modern concert piano allows him to get in contrast that the one that Beethoven period piano offered). The result was a very beautiful performance of a difficult work.
The second part, the monumental Bruckner 7th symphony got an intense performance that the German orchestra played like effortless.