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Shaham and Sierra at the NSO


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Since I've discovered we have something of a DC contingency here (yay us!), I was wondering if anyone got a chance to see this performance. I was there on Wednesday (for the first half anyway), and know most of the performances were sold out. I pulled the link from the review in the Post, and would love to hear some reactions....

Full disclosure time: I definitely fell into the "macroscopic sense of simplicity" category myself. I know some of you have touched on this before, but I'm convinced that not knowing music formally often translates to more enjoyment. Sometimes ignorance is bliss, I guess...


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Fritz, you lucky dog! I wanted to go to the rehearsal, but there's only so much work I can justify missing for music... 'Course, now I wish I'd have taken a coupla hours off after all!

Also, how did you get a chance to meet him? He didn't sign autographs on Wednesday, which is too bad because I really wanted to meet him. Actually, it's probably just as well. I have a tendency to make an *** of myself in front of professional musicians....

I have a bunch of his CDs, but this is the first time I've seen him live. Won't be the last, though. He'll be touring in NYC in the Fall, so I'll probably trek up.

Say, what'd you think of the Sierra?

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I totally agree about Shaham's tone, truly stunning! This is why I am inclined to buy his CDs. His recording of the Sibeluis is outrageously good and I like the Tchaikovsky that came after it on the same CD.

The only recording I didnt like from Shaham was the Wieniawski concertos, everything else was wonderful.

I also liked David Oistrakh and Kyung Wha Chung's recording of the Sibelius alot.

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I was there on wed night! Actually i saw gil play sibelius twice that day because I went to the dress rehearsal and the performance. Gosh how i LOVE his tone!!! He has the most golden tone i've ever heard live int hat concert hall. I also had a chance to talk to him yesterday. He was very approachable and SOOO modest for a person of his standing.

This week was a god sent gift for me because i got to see my favorite violinist, Gil Shaham, play the most amazing violin concerto, Sibelius.

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I heard Shaham on this work in his Deutche Grammophone recording.

Like other modern violinist recordings of this piece, his playing didn't follow the written rhythm or tempo markings.

That first page is NOT a cadenza!

The only soloist I've heard whose playing of this concerto follows the written rhythm is Heifetz, and even he couldn't fully keep the written pulse going.

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Of course it does.

The entire solo that Frederic Pope composed in his moment of "inspiration" has motifs that come directly from the 1st movement of the Sibelius Violin Concerto.

I tolerated Oistrakh's inability to keep the written rhythm on the Sibelius because he hits the spirit of the music - and thus sounds like "Oistrakh".

From a score reading perspective, Shaham's Tchaikovsky recording also has the same kind of score distortion that his Sibelius has.

There is something to be said for playing written rhythms in BOTH concertos.

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I thought some of the Red Violin stuff sounded awfully like Paganini caprices, especially his "gypsy cadenza" sounded like No. 5.

Back on topic...I saw Shaham give a recital in Carnegie Hall from the second row (the seat was dying to be filled after intermission, my original seat was lousy) and I was very impressed. His tone was enormous and his Carmen Fantasy encore rules.

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Interesting, MichaelaB!

When I saw Shaham live, I thought that his tone was medium sized and very sweet.

His Carmen Fantasy IS wonderful - though he distorts the 2-3 tango rhythm in the 2nd movement (doesn't EVERYBODY?)

"Gypsy cadenza?" I don't remember anything in that movie sounding like Paganini Caprice #5 - no downdowndownup repeated ricochet bowing.

[This message has been edited by HuangKaiVun (edited 03-03-2001).]

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