, May 2012
The first pleasant surprise that the material is in colour…
[Leinsdorf] is on truly inspired and inspiring form, conducting with total involvement. This doesn’t mean that it’s all fast and loud: the Beethoven goes at a good but not excessive pace and there is plenty of expressive weight to the introduction. The wind phrases in the allegro are beautifully turned and the coda truly blazes.
But his Tchaikovsky?
Leinsdorf plays this with great tenderness and free rubato, even risking some less precise ensemble. I must emphasize that here everything is white-hot and convinces as a free expression of emotions.
So, too, does the slow movement. The tempo is pretty steady but there is a sense of free-soaring passion which completely effaces any sense of the four-square. The waltz has an elegance which does not prevent exploitation of its darker moments while the finale carries all before it. The coda has an air of crude triumph presaging Mahler. Audience reaction is rightly rapturous and even Leinsdorf manages some smiles. It looks as though the Bostonians learnt to love Leinsdorf just as he was on his way out.
…don’t miss the Tchaikovsky on any account. © 2012 MusicWeb International Read complete review