Jessica Duchen's Classical Music & Ballet Blog. Novelist/journalist JD writes for The Independent, London
Not about Hungary, but I'd be interested to know what you make of this.We all know that critics often disagree with each other, but surely something is wrong in the following extracts from reviews of Abbado's Edinburgh Magic Flute.Raymond Monelle in the Independent:“The maestro chose to take everything slowly, sometimes very slowly indeed. The Mahler Chamber Orchestra followed him expertly, but his inexperienced cast couldn't handle it.”Tom Service in the Guardian:“[Abbado’s] speeds are quick, and the grace and lightness of touch he draws from the players and singers is testament to how much he has learned from period-instrument performance practice.”I wonder if any of your readers heard the performance and can act as referee?Peter Smith
That's a very good question! And shows the disparity of critical opinion all too clearly. I didn't get to Edinburgh, but have heard Abbado & the MCO's recording. Sorry to say that I simply loathed it, despite much fine singing. The tempi varied, but tended to the wild: the sort of mess that can result when musicians think they're being influenced by period performance but actually don't have a clue. Some of the lurches, fits and starts in the resulting rhythms made me feel utterly seasick, especially in 'Ach, ich fuhls...' Pamina may feel nauseous, but must we?!
I just had to keep reading to find out what "footy" meant, J.!!!
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