London Symphony Orchestra with Emanuel Ax and Bearnard Haitink: Brahms 3rd and Beethoven Emperor
Another great music night with the London Symphony Orchestra. The programme was very classic and the only novelty was doing the symphony in the first part and the concerto in the second one.
The Brahms was what we expected: control and crystal-clear exposition. The whole was over the parts and every single modulation had a clear path in the whole picture of this 3rd symphony performance. No crazy rubato neither HIP-influenced dynamics. It was a superb Brahms. Not only the audience enjoyed it a lot but also the orchestra that refused for a while to stand up to let maestro Haitink to get all the applause.
The second part was even better. Emanuel Ax way of playing, elegant, clear, making easy the most complicated parts, matches perfectly the way Haitink conducts. Strangely they have only recorded together Brahms, while Beethoven music is the one that benefits more from thins intra-classical/intra-romantic conception. The trick on this concerto is to hide to the listener all the traps that Beethoven orchestration includes and Ax and Haitink did this very well by listening to each other, with an admirable concentration, even taking risks. Amazing. The orchestra matched the quality level following Haitink orders with precision and deploying a very beautiful sound. Special Kudos to Nigel, the timpani player, that did an impressive job playing with subtle dynamics.