Go out and listen to something…

March 1, 2008

Lorin Maazel and Wagner at the Met

Filed under: music, theater, travel — burnett @ 5:23 am

 LM and the Phil in Pyongyang

The night before heading to Beijing for the now famous New York Philharmonic China and Pyongyang tour, Lorin Maazel conducted his last Walkure performance at the Met on Feb. 6.  I was offered a last minute ticket, so jumped on the train and arrived just in time for the curtain.  I am embarrassed to say that this was my first visit to the Met, and my first opportunity to hear the orchestra.  In short, among musicians, this orchestra has often been spoken of as the greatest in the country, if not the world.  I was struck by the impact of the basses and lower brass from my seat (11th row directly behind the conductor).  The singers were outstanding, and the production was old and old-fashioned.  Orchestras always play their best with LM, and I heard one of the finest orchestral performances of my lifetime.  The clarity and execution were foremost, and the sustained winds and strings mesmerizing, an LM trait.  There is a simple purity in an LM performance, that allows the music to just speak for itself.  To hear this particular work in this setting with this conductor…

Listen: Dress rehearsal of Walkure at the Met.  Takes awhile to load, but worth it.

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