Mendelssohn, Ein Sommernachtstraum, La Chapelle Royale, Collegium Vocale Gent, Orchestre des Champs-Elysées, P. Herreweghe (Harmonia Mundi, 2012)
The BSO provided an exquisite performance of Mendelssohn's score, in spite of being arranged toward the back of the stage and with sections of the orchestra separated from one another in unusual ways. This allowed the woodwinds to be at the front of the center part of the orchestra for a change, to create a central playing space around Alsop's podium, but it also created a few balance issues between the violins and the lower strings far away. Even so, as with last week's concert, the BSO was in top form, again especially the violins who were feather-light on the many filigree passages, even the ultra-fast Scherzo, and a top-notch horn solo in the Nocturne. The women of the Baltimore Choral Arts Society provided an evanescent background in the choral numbers, especially "Ye spotted snakes," with fine solo work from airy-voiced soprano Ying Fang and the more robust mezzo-soprano of Julie Boulianne.
Tim Smith, Baltimore Symphony, Folger Theatre present vivid 'Midsummer Night's Dream' (Baltimore Sun, May 31)
Joan Reinthaler, 'Midsummer Night's Dream' with music at Folger Theatre (Washington Post, May 31)
Rebecca Ritzel, BSO and Folger collaborate on unique staging of ‘Midsummer’ (Washington Post, May 28)
Marin Alsop's Guide to Mendelssohn's 'A Midsummer Night's Dream' (NPR, May 24)
This performance repeats tonight and tomorrow, at Meyerhoff Symphony Hall in Baltimore.