Sibelius / Khachaturian, Violin Concertos, S. Khachatryan, Sinfonia Varsovia, E. Krivine (Naïve, 2004)
After a heroic horn introduction, the second movement had just the right tempo, not too fast, to put that forlorn clarinet theme in the best light, ambling along at its own pace. Only the third movement seemed not quite right, too harried, although it settled into a slightly slower place later. It is already jolly enough with all those triangle rolls, the only time that a percussion instrument other than timpani appears in a Brahms symphony, and the comic metric shifts and hammered accents. The concluding passacaglia had a pleasing solemnity, with intensity more than speed, especially in the slower middle part.
Tim Smith, BSO makes dynamic music with conductor Jakub Hrusa, violinist Sergey Khachatryan (Baltimore Sun, February 1)
We are big fans of the music of Leoš Janáček here at Ionarts, but his brief orchestral piece known as Jealousy did not convince. This was both because the piece is odd, not really a curtain-raiser as it was offered here, and because Hrůša, who is a specialist in this composer's music, was at his most frantic and hard to understand, at least from the house. It was difficult to hear what either the composer or the conductor was after. One would have preferred something like the Sinfonietta instead.
Guest conductor Mario Venzago and pianist André Watts join the BSO this week, for music by Gluck, Mozart, and Schumann (February 4 to 6).