Apr 14 2024
Stravinsky, Schubert, Beethoven
Anja Bihlmaier conductor
Steven Osborne piano
Stravinsky Dumbarton Oaks
Schubert Symphony No. 8 ‘Unvollendete‘
Beethoven Piano Concerto No. 5 ‘Emperor’
Beethoven’s Fifth Piano Concerto is magisterial. The grandeur of the work befits the first meeting of two musical greats: chief conductor Anja Bihlmaier and master pianist Steven Osborne. With the Residentie Orkest tonight, they do the Emperor’s concerto justice to its name. Another composer from Vienna also makes his presence felt: Franz Schubert. His Eighth Symphony is known as the “Unvollendete. After all, Schubert only made two movements. Whether more came we do not know. But what there is is definitely music of unparalleled beauty.
Scottish master pianist Steven Osborne plays with all the world’s great orchestras and has won numerous awards. The Emperor Concerto has everything to let his versatility shine through: joyful and virtuoso boisterous, but also dreamy and meditative. Consequently, the world-renowned pianist’s Beethoven interpretations are blazing where necessary, moving to tears in the slow movements. For Dumbarton Oaks, Igor Stravinsky “borrowed” music from Bach. Think of it as a tribute to the genius Bach. Stravinsky himself was not at all difficult about this. No need to be: in the end he managed to make the work sound unmistakably Stravinsky-jazz-like.