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Sopranos who trained in dance, Yefim Bronfman & Albany Symphony Or

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I'm on cloud nine after seeing Mr. Bronfman perform Beethoven's Piano Concerto #5 today (one of my most beloved works) in the great and acoustically renowned Troy Music Hall, under the baton of Maestro David Alan Miller of the ASO. What an outstanding performance: the orchestra is impeccable and absolutely sparkled and how Mr. Bronfman made that Steinway sing! The concert also included Kodaly's Dances of Galanta (love that work, also) and Christopher Rouse's Kabir Padavali, beautiful songs for soprano and orchestra set to six Indian poems of Kabir. The soprano was Talise Trevigne, who has a gorgeous, deep and dark voice and, from the program notes, originally trained as a dancer. She also was the vocal soloist in the world premiere of Dance Theatre of Harlem's St Louis Woman - A Blues Ballet. What musical gifts!

This concert was performed twice, today and last night, to a packed theater. Mr. Bronfman received a standing ovation and encored Schumann's Arabesque and it was so lovely. Maestro Miller is a wonderful musical director and is full of great energy and spirit when he's conducting; he's very charming!. The ASO also performs at the Palace Theatre in Albany and we who love this orchestra are thrilled that the ASO's concerts are extremely well-attended these days. We're blessed to have such a musical powerhouse!

The ASO will perform at Carnegie Hall for the 2nd time, having been invited back for the Hall's Spring for Music series this May, so keep it in mind if you'd like to see an excellent regional orchestra that isn't all that regional!

~ Karen

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Thank you for that glowing report, AlbanyGirl. Sounds like wonderful listening. "Kodaly Dances" was once an NYCB ballet - John Clifford did it, I think.

Yes, when I was listening to the Kodaly yesterday, I imagined it choreographed. A couple of other points: David Alan Miller is known for championing the works of modern composers and almost all concerts in each season features a work of a modern composer. Also, that living composer is usually present for the concert, which is really fun (Christopher Rouse, Joan Tower to mention two). And we ballet lovers and enthusiast may be happy to hear that Mr. Miller has conducted the New York City Ballet orchestra!

As you are the generous bringer of our daily links, Dirac, you may wish to read the Albany Times Union review today of the concert at:


Bringing Mr. Bronfman back into the discussion, I found something really fun on his Wikipedia article and I think it's ok to post it as it is short. Here it is:

In The Human Stain by Philip Roth, the narrator attends a rehearsal at Tanglewood at which Bronfman performs. The following colorful description is offered (page 209-210):

  • Then Bronfman appears. Bronfman the brontosaur! Mr. Fortissimo. Enter Bronfman to play Prokofiev at such a pace and with such bravado as to knock my morbidity clear out of the ring. He is conspicuously massive through the upper torso, a force of nature camouflaged in a sweatshirt, somebody who has strolled into the Music Shed out of a circus where is the strongman and who takes on the piano as a ridiculous challenge to the gargantuan strength he revels in. Yefim Bronfman looks less like the person who is going to play the piano than like the guy who should be moving it. I had never before seen anybody go at a piano like this sturdy little barrel of an unshaven Russian Jew. When he's finished, I thought, they'll have to throw the thing out. He crushes it. He doesn't let that piano conceal a thing. Whatever's in there is going to come out, and come out with its hands in the air. And when it does, everything there out in the open, the last of the last pulsation, he himself gets up and goes, leaving behind him our redemption. With a jaunty wave, he is suddenly gone, and though he takes all his fire off with him like no less a force than Prometheus, our own lives now seem inextinguishable. Nobody is dying, nobody - not if Bronfman has anything to say about it.

~ Karen

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