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Cleveland Orchestra Season Opening, Miami, 01/29/11

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This weekend was quite an active one for the classical music lovers down here. We enjoyed two major events. The opening series of the New World Center Campus for the New World Symphony and one more year of the successful residency of the Cleveland Orchestra, masterfully conducted by Director Mr. Welser-Most.

The program chosen for this opening concert started with L'Apres-midi d'un faune, Debussy's mesmerizing and exotic work, which never fails to hunt you with its languid opening melody, which eventually develops and becomes more and more animated to finally leads you to its beautifully gentle ending.

After Debussy we were offered Schumann's Piano Concerto in A minor, Opus 54, a tour de force with enormous virtuosic demands for the pianist-(especially in the third movement), but also with strong emphasis on lyricism-(at many points of the concerto being this quality more emphasized than that of its virtuosity). The work finishes with its third movement, Allegro Vivace, a vivacious and playful music that totally gets you in a great mood and good energy. The pianist was Pierre-Laurent Aimard , a superb French musician who excelled in the concert's most demaning bravura segments but also ultra sensitive when required by the piece.

Finally the night ended with Richard Strauss' Ein Heldenleben-("A Hero's Life"), his controversial symphonic poem with all its strange, ever changing segments that are meant to describe literary and philosophical motifs of the life of "The Hero"-(Strauss himself, according to his own accounts). A complex work plenty of different tones and tempi that eventually settles into a final outburst, followed by the peaceful mood of the coda.

It was a wonderful program, but Schumann was definitely my big winner of the night. :clapping:

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