Friday, May 27, 2016


Our second visit to the Philharmonie was a completely different experience. We were in good stalls seats this time and how I managed that was a stroke - this performance should have sold out the day it was announced.

The concert was Daniel Harding with the Orchestre de Paris - Berg's Violin Concerto in Memory of a Dead Child, with Isabelle Faust, and Mahler's 4th, with Christina Landschamer.

The Berg I find a hard nut to crack. And it keeps on popping up, and I keep on thinking I'm nearly there. And then I hear it again. Faust was very good but I wasn't moved although I wanted to be, perhaps that's the problem.

The Mahler 4 was a benchmark. I don't think I've ever heard anything quite so beautiful. My first Mahler 4 was decades ago, a student buy, the Klemperer with E.S. I've waited till now to hear it and feel I've heard it. I've moved on from my last - the Budapest Festival with Fischer. Harding is amazing. Balletic. There was a total suspension - of the past or the future, in the hall, in the breathing, in the sound, which would sit there, crystalline at times, in the those impeccably timed and potent moments of sudden stillness. What a great orchestra. Christina Landschamer was perfect - a richness infusing innocence. 

It was our last night in Paris.

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