"Senn and Heard UK Concert Review"

January 2 2012

Bob Briggs, www.musicweb-international.com

Nobember, 6, 2009

Verdi, Tchaikovsky and Dvořák: Denis Matsuev (piano) London Philharmonic Orchestra, Yutaka Sado Royal Festival Hall, London

A sparkling and vivacious performance of the Overture to Verdi’s La forza del destino got this show off to a pleasantly breezy start. I have written elsewhere about the problems of giving a concert of such well known pieces as the Tchaikovsky and Dvorak, for whether we do or not, we all think that we know these pieces. Matsuev and Sado knew exactly what they were going to do to Tchaikovsky’s well known Concerto; they were going to grab it by the shoulders, give it a really good shaking, then kick it up the backside and tell it to have a good time. And we all did. Matsuev was superb throughout, whether leading the way with big gestures, or simply playing a gentle accompaniment to a solo flute. There was no lack of red blooded virtuosity here, but it was tempered with thought and care. This was quite special. Sado drew exciting playing from his orchestra in the outer movements yet he achieved the most ravishing pianissimo from the strings in the slow movement. Matsuev didn’t give us an encore, but how could he have followed such a marvellous performance as the one he had just given? Talk about new wine in old bottles — this was a class vintage which, with further performances of this calibre, will mature into a very singular interpretation.

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