Sudbin’s Reading of the Scriabin Piano Concerto Beguiles Bournemouth Audience

25/02/2016

Mussorgsky, Scriabin, Berlioz: Yevgeny Sudbin (piano) Bournemouth Symphony Orchestra/ Alexander Vedernikov (conductor), The Lighthouse, Poole, 24.02. 2016. (IL)

Mussorgsky (orch. Rimsky-Korsakov) – A Night on the Bare Mountain
Scriabin – Piano Concerto
BerliozSymphonie Fantastique

The young Russian pianist Yevgeny Sudbin’s recording of the Scriabin Piano Concerto with Andrew Litton was released last year in time for the centenary of the composer’s death.  It won unanimous praise from the critics and was cited as a BBC Music Magazine Concerto Choice. His performance here, with the BSO under Vedernikov, confirmed, if that was necessary, his prodigious talent and empathy and sensitivity to the special Scriabin idiom which, even though an early work and under the influence of Chopin and Rachmaninov, was very idiosyncratic.  I can do no better than echo the words of my colleague, Stephen Greenbank, who reviewed the BIS recording in the classical music recordings reviews section of this site: “Sudbin displays formidable technical virtuosity, in a performance contrasting emotional intensity with melancholy and tranquility … I cannot understand  why this melodious concerto is not taken up by more pianists”.

The BSO orchestra for the Berlioz Symphonie Fantastique was somewhat different from that prescribed by the composer. For instance, Berlioz requested four harps, two were used,  and Berlioz only wanted one bass drum, Vederniko had two. Verderniko drew a dynamic performance of this well-loved symphony. His ‘Ball Waltz’ sparkled the dance swirling and lilting beguilingly – one wonders how much more glitter could have been added with those extra harps. The cor anglais solo in the ‘Scene in the Country’ third movement was exquisitely rendered and excitement engendered with the evocation of threatening thunder by the four sets of timpani.  The percussion and brass section had a field day in the two succeeding movements: the ‘March to Scaffold’ and the macabre Dream of a Witches Sabbath’. The effect of the two bass drums was electrifying as was the big sound from the whole orchestra.

Witches figured in the brief Mussorgsky piece. Vedernikov conveyed  with relish all their shrewishness and satanic excesses before the piece ended in sweet tranquillity as dawn breaks.

A very enjoyable concert.  Sudbin’s Scriabin Concerto was a revelation to this reviewer.

Ian Lace

Comments

Leave a Reply

Recent Reviews

Season Previews

__________________________________
  • NEW! Edinburgh Usher Hall 2019-2020 Orchestral Season __________________________________
  • NEW! Lyric Opera of Chicago’s 2020 Ring Cycles __________________________________
  • NEW! Ex Cathedra’s 50th Anniversary Season in 2019-20 __________________________________
  • NEW! Geneva Grand Théâtre in 2019-20 __________________________________
  • UPDATED! 2019-20 at the Royal Opera House, Covent Garden __________________________________
  • NEW! City of Birmingham Symphony Orchestra in 2019-20 __________________________________
  • NEW! Musikfest Berlin 2019 from 30 August to 19 September __________________________________
  • NEW! Tonhalle Orchestra Zurich in 2019-20 __________________________________
  • NEW! Zurich Opera House in 2019-20 __________________________________
  • NEW! English National Opera in 2019-2020 __________________________________
  • NEW! ENB in 2019-2020 and Updates on their New London City Island Home __________________________________
  • NEW! Classical Music and Other Events at the Southbank Centre in 2019-20 __________________________________
  • UPDATED! Cleveland Orchestra in 2019-20 __________________________________
  • NEW! Classical Music at the Barbican in 2019-20 __________________________________
  • NEW! The Met: Live in HD in 2019-20 __________________________________
  • NEW! Carnegie Hall 2019-2020 Season Highlights __________________________________
  • NEW! Venus Unwrapped: Kings Place’s Year-Long Focus on Women Composers __________________________________
  • Subscribe to Free Review Summary Newsletter

    Reviews by Reviewer

    News and Featured Articles

    __________________________________
  • NEW! SOPRANO ANGELA GHEORGHIU IN CONVERSATION WITH MICHAEL COOKSON __________________________________
  • NEW! Opera Loki’s Madam Butterfly can be seen in Alton and London this September __________________________________
  • NEW! The Joys of the Marlboro Music Festival: Chamber Music’s Best-Kept Secret __________________________________
  • NEW! MATTHEW BOURNE’S ROMEO AND JULIET IN CINEMAS FROM 22 OCTOBER __________________________________
  • NEW! CELLIST JOHANNES MOSER IN CONVERSATION WITH GEOFFREY NEWMAN __________________________________
  • NEW! CHORUS MASTER STEPHEN DOUGHTY IN CONVERSATION WITH ROBERT BEATTIE __________________________________
  • REVIEWED! Ron Howard’s Pavarotti in Cinemas 13 July (Preview) and Nationwide (15 July) __________________________________
  • MULTI-FACETED MUSICIAN JOY LISNEY IN CONVERSATION WITH ROBERT BEATTIE __________________________________
  • ‘MUSICAL MAGIC’: AN INTERVIEW WITH VIOLINIST HENNING KRAGGERUD __________________________________
  • CONDUCTOR THOMAS SANDERLING IN CONVERSATION WITH GREGOR TASSIE __________________________________
  • CONDUCTOR ÁDÁM FISCHER IN CONVERSATION WITH MICHAEL COOKSON __________________________________
  • A Q&A WITH GERMAN SOPRANO PETRA LANG __________________________________
  • HOW TO CONTACT SEEN AND HEARD INTERNATIONAL __________________________________
  • A Q&A WITH ITALIAN BARITONE FRANCO VASSALLO __________________________________
  • Search S&H

    Archives by Week

    Archives by Month