This week sees the first of two London concerts with Bernard Haitink
conducting the London Symphony Orchestra in a programme of Shostakovich and Mozart. The first concert combines Shostakovich’s immense Fourth Symphony with Mozart’s Piano Concerto no.9 played by Emanuel Ax
; in the second concert we hear two iconic late works in the lives of Mozart and Shostakovich, Piano Concerto no.27 and Symphony no.15. After completing the London leg, the tour moves to the US where New Yorkers are treated to repeat concerts in the Avery Fisher Hall
These powerful symphonies are no mean feat for any conductor let alone one who turns 85 next year and who only a few weeks ago stepped in for Claudio Abbado and the Orchestra Mozart conducting performances in Amsterdam, Brussels and London to critical acclaim.
‘From the moment that Haitink began the Leonore no.2 overture, with the woodwinds conjuring a real dolce and the strings answering in translucent softness, the orchestral sound had great refinement. The playing in the fourth symphony surged and scampered, with Haitink ensuring it also packed a well-structured punch. The Egmont overture, played as an encore, was stunning, best of the lot.’ Martin Kettle, The Guardian, Friday 4 October 2013
The two Lincoln Center concerts will be the first of a trio of appearances in New York to celebrate his 85th birthday season. He will bring the Boston Symphony to Carnegie Hall in February and return the venue in May for two New York Philharmonic subscription weeks.
With barely a week’s rest after New York, Haitink conducts again in the US once again alongside Emanuel Ax, this time with the Chicago Symphony Orchestra in a programme pairing Mozart’s Piano Concerto no.27 and Bruckner Symphony no.4.
This wonderful start to 2013/14 sees Haitink entering the 60th season of his conducting career. During this season he celebrates in Europe with the Tonhalle Orchestra in Zurich; concerts at the Concertgebouw, the Lucerne Festival and the Barbican with the Chamber Orchestra of Europe; the Berliner Philharmoniker at the Philharmonie in March to mark the 50th anniversary of his debut; and the Bayerischer Rundfunk with concerts in Munich and Salzburg to open the 2014 Summer Festival.
To read more about Bernard Haitink’s connection and admiration of Shostakovich ahead of his concerts with the LSO please click here