Navigation for The Critic's Chair

The Critic's Chair series ended in March 2015.

This week Robert Johnson returns toThe Critic's Chair.

LSORACHMANINOV: Symphonic Dances
STRAVINSKY: Symphony in Three Movements
London SO/Valery Gergiev
(LSO 0688 CD)

A particularly dark, weighty and symphonic view of Rachmaninov’s Symphonic Dances from Gergiev and the London Symphony, coupled unexpectedly with a more mainstream interpretation of the Stravinsky.

DohnanyiDOHNÁNYI: String Quartets Nos.1 and 3
Aviv Quartet
(Naxos 8.572569)

Dohnányi’s First String Quartet springs directly from the tradition of Brahms and Dvořák, while the Third uses more complex harmony while remaining within this tradition. Excellent performances of both works.

CDABRITTEN: Violin Concerto; Double Concerto; Lachrymae
Anthony Marwood (violin), Lawrence Power (viola), BBC Scottish Symphony Orchestra conducted by Ilan Volkov
(Hyperion CDA67801)

An outstanding performance by Anthony Marwood of Britten’s moving Violin Concerto, haunted by the spectre of the Spanish Civil War. Violist Lawrence Power is equally fine in the Double Concerto and Lachrymae.

DeccaBehzod Abduraimov (pno): Recital
SAINT-SÄENS  transcr. LISZT/HOROWITZ: Danse macabre, PROKOFIEV: Suggestion diabolique; Piano Sonata No.6, LISZT: Bénédiction de Dieu dans la

solitude; Mephisto Waltz No.1)
(Decca 478 3301)

Remarkable performances in Behzod Abduraimov’s debut recital, showing technical mastery allied to an extraordinary maturity of interpretation for such a young pianist.

cd adams sfs symphonyADAMS: Harmonielehre; Short Ride in a Fast Machine
San Francisco Symphony Orchestra/Michael Tilson Thomas
(SFS Media SFS 0053)

Marvellous live recordings of two works that have achieved an almost iconic status within contemporary American music.