This is an a posteriori quick recap of concerts I attended in London before having the blog. Just for completeness geekery or diary purposes.
13th May 2017: Jean Rondeau: Vertigo
First concert in the city and it’s in a church (St Peter’s Eaton Sq). I was scared. Happily I saw one of the new baroque music starts very close by. Rameau and Royer. Loved it. A lot
14th May 2017: Takács Quartet plays 3 Beethoven quartets
First visit to the Wigmore Hall. Loved the place and loved the Takács playing one quartet from each Beethoven period. Scared about being the youngest guy in the hall.
16th May 2017: St James’ Baroque: Bach Mass in B minor
Wow, this was insane. A religious music at the Westminster Abbey! I made the big mistake of getting a ticket with no view. Worse was the non-announced “very poor listening experience”. So I had to somehow guess how it was sounding. Enjoyed the place A LOT and figuring out the experience.
19th May 2017: European Union Baroque Orchestra with Maria Keohane directed by Lars Ulrik Mortensen
Yeah, I known, every concert here is baroque… I came to London in a very baroque mood and it was this London Baroque festival so… Lovely concert. Decent orchestra and very good singing. A lot of politics on the last-concert speech by Lars. Very emotional.
21th May 2017: Fitzwilliam Quartet
I spotted this one while walking in front of the Conway Hall on my way to work. I had the feeling that I was missing a lot of concerts and it was difficult to find a complete “What’s On” for classical music in London. One of the reasons why I started later the blog. The concert had some mythical aura because of the quartet premiering some Shostakovich concerts. They this Bach, a premiere, Shostakovich’s 13th and Shubert’s Death and the Maiden. Shocked a little bit for the not-so-european approach to quartet music but enjoyed it a lot. Again scared about being the youngest. First non-baroque concert
24th May 2017: BBCSO: Messiaen L’Ascension and Turangalîla Symphony conducted by Oramo
First symphonic concert. First visit to the Barbican. This was a must because I love Turangalîla so much. Shocked by: * a lot of unsold seats * crappy acoustics of the Barbican Hall
However enjoyed a lot the first listening to L’Ascension and a good version of the difficult Turangalîla.
25th May 2017: Philharmonia orchestra: Brahms Piano Concerto No. 1 (with Martin Helmchen) and Beethoven’s 7th conducted by Herbert Blomstedt
And first visit to the Royal Festival Hall. Shocked this time with the audience clapping between movements and being composed by tourists mostly. Doesn’t this city love this venerable orchestra? Enjoyed the Brahms a lot but got disappointed with the Beethoven.
30th May 2017: Stille Antico
2nd visit to the Wigmore Hall. Fist full contact with the amazing British choral performance tradition. Loved the transparency and accuracy of the ensemble.
1st Jun 2017: Stradivaria
This was very sad. Only 20% of the seats occupied? I started to think at this point that London audience follows more the name and the starts than really the musical quality and programmes. That or that French baroque is not a loved thing here. I did love it. Also it was the first time I flirted with one of the musicians on grindr.
8th Jun 2017: LSO: Brahms Piano Concerto No 2 (Yuja Wang) and Nielsen’s 5th conducted by Michael Tilson Thomas
This was wonderfull. I had the change to complete my Brahms piano cycle in less than a month (well played by Wang) and totally loved the Nielsen. Really. A lot. Amazed by the technical perfection of LSO. And confirmed Thomas as one of my favorite conductors alive.
10th Jun 2017: La Rondine
Someone told me about this Holland Park Opera thing but it was too late to get cheap tickets (I am not paying 70 GBP for an opera, sorry). But managed to get a cheap ticket from the online board. I love this opera and enjoyed a lot the performance.
11th Jun 2017: Murray Perahia
First piano recital. Cheap ticket on the first row (very extreme). Discovered the crazy prize level assignation in London. Very good recital. New Perahia focusing on he can do well.
12th Jun 2017: Michael Petrov & Erdem Mısırlıoğlu
1st 20th century/modern music recital at Wigmore Hall: Stravinsky, Dutilleux, Debussy, Carter, Poulenc. Loved completely. Happy to get this kind of repertoire in town.
13th Jun 2017: L’elisir d’amore
First visit to the ROH! First: amazed to get a very cheap ticket for stalls circle with only slightly restricted view. I was seeing Alagna face from 3 meters! Found the building a little bit crazy (not trivial going from one place to another) and a mix of very outdated stuff (those seats!) with “we are trying to renew” stuff. Really loved a lot Pelly production and Alagna+Kurzak chemistry. Happy to see him back on top.
17th Jun 2017: La Traviata
Wow, second visit to the ROH in one week. Friday rush tickets magic. This Traviata production was special to me as I loved the DVD when I was a boy. Coming from a city with a Staggione theatre scheme was strange to me this concept of repertoire theatre scheme where productions are keeps for centuries and staged every 2-3 years. Good cast (specially Violetta) and perfect production
23rd Jun 2017: Teatime opera: The Telephone
Opera in a church. That was crazy. And free. Menotti mini opera is delicious and I enjoyed the crazy performance.
25th Jun 2017: Vienna piano trio
Fist coffee time concert. Like the idea of 1 hour concert on Sunday mornings and having a free cherry later (no one was asking for coffee). And the Schubert was superb.
28th Jun 2017: Chabrier’s Une education & Poulenc’s Les mamelles de Tirsias
First concert on a music school. Beautiful Britten theatre. Loved the idea of infrequent operas. Very very high standards for everything on these productions.
29th Juan 2017: Mitridate, re di Ponto
This one was the first Mozart opera out of the popular canon that I bought and I listened a lot while I was a child. So it was special to me. Also Rousset was special to me for a lot of reasons. Enjoyed the production and the voices. Loved Lucy Crowe.
2nd Jul 2017: Otello
Got this ticket after a return. Everyone on town was crazy about Kaufmann. Liked it but below expectations. Production was boring
7th Jul 2017: Maurice Steger & Jean Rondeau
First lunchtime concert. I didn’t know that this thing even existed and bought the ticket thinking it was at a normal post-18 hour. I had to run from work to attend to (and ennjoy) this one. Very nice complicity between both of them.
4th Jul 2017: OAE: Bach goes to Paris
First concert with the Orchestra of the Age of Enlightenment and my loved William Christie. Totally loved it. A lot. Got a lot of tickets for them after it :)
13th Jul 2017: Biber’s requiem
First visit to Guildhall school. Wonderful facilities. Brilliant students. Really. And free. I was on track.
14th Jul 2017: Turandot
Again Alagna and Kurzak. She stole the function from Lise Lindstrom. Fist time I got into the story of this opera. And that is good.
15th Jul 2017: Prom 2: Daniel Barenboim conducts Sibelius and Elgar
First Prom! (not in my life, as I attended to a lot of them that summer I lived in London as a teenager, but that’s a different story). Ah, the Staatskapelle. What an orchestra. Batiashvili did an amazin Sibelius concert helped by a very intelligent Barenboim.
16th Jul 2017: Prom 3: Bernard Haitink conducts Mozart and Schumann
First Prom in the Arena. Expected more from Haitink in the Schumann and the Prague. Faust and the orchestra were very good.
16th Jul 2017: Prom 4: Daniel Barenboim and Staatskapelle Berlin (2)
First double-bill day :). UK premiere + Elgar 2. + Politics speech. Loved it
19th Jul 2017: Mary Bevan
I got tickets for this concert because I loved Elizabeth Watts Scarlatti album so much last year. But she was pregnant and got replaced by Mary Bevan who did a very nice Schubert recital
20th Jul 2017: The merchant of Venice
Boring opera, boring production and underlevel singing. I left after the intermission. It was forgotten for some reason.