For better or worse, there is no programming coordination between the Munich orchestras at all. For one, they don’t have to. The crowds attending the various concerts of the Munich Philharmonic, Bavarian Radio Symphony Orchestra, and the ‘Academy Concerts’ of the Bavarian State (Opera) Orchestra (to name just the three big orchestras) are surprisingly distinct. And most of the ones who do attend the concerts of two or all three of these orchestras are liable to be fond of the idea of hearing Richard Strauss’ Alpine Symphony performed three times by the likes of Kent Nagano, Christian Thielemann, and Franz Welser-Möst (as happened last season.)
|Zimmermann et al., "Who is afraid of 20th Century Music,|
I.Metzmacher / Hamburg Philharmonic
|A.Bruckner, Symphony No.9,|
G.Wand / BPh
Nagano imperceptibly built up a force that eventually unleashed itself upon the listener with unpitying force… unsentimental and gripping to the point of choking the listener. Not all was grim—the viola pizzicatos in the slow movement were downright saucy—but in the end this was otherworldly, overwhelming, with overtones of desolation, isolation... far removed from the cliché of Bruckner, the genial simpleton. “Space Music” is what another critic, similarly enthralled, said afterwards; an apt description of what turned out to be the finest, most intriguing of the “Academy Concerts” I have heard under Nagano.
Picture courtesy Bavarian State Opera, © Wilfried Hösl