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BSO Goes for Baroque

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Charles T. Downey, Markus Stenz makes BSO debut in concert influenced by early music movement
Washington Post, October 6, 2012

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Beethoven, Sy. 3, Helsingborg SO, A. Manze

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Rebel, Les élémens, Les Musiciens du Louvre, M. Minkowski
The historically informed performance movement continues to have an impact on mainstream orchestral ensembles. For a time, conductors shied away from that territory, often leaving baroque and early classical music to the early music specialists. As the Baltimore Symphony Orchestra showed in its program at Strathmore on Thursday night, application of the lessons of the movement can help reclaim that repertory for modern instruments, with gratifying results.

German conductor Markus Stenz, in a noteworthy debut with Marin Alsop’s orchestra members, led a chamber-size group in the “Chaos” introduction to Jean-Fery Rebel’s choreographed symphony “Les elemens,” from 1737. In an early flirtation with atonality, Rebel depicted the formlessness of the world before its creation by using all the notes of the D harmonic minor scale simultaneously. Two piccolo players, set perilously high, chirped away in intertwined lines against a cushion of crisply coordinated strings. [Continue reading]
Baltimore Symphony Orchestra
With Markus Stenz (conductor) and Kolja Blacher (violin)
Music Center at Strathmore

This concert repeats tonight, at Meyerhoff Symphony Hall in Baltimore.

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