Tuesday, March 17, 2015

concert review: Symphony Silicon Valley

So if I went to The Emerald Isle and the Academy of St. Martin in the Fields on Sunday, on Saturday I went to Symphony Silicon Valley to review an all-Shostakovich concert.

It was an enjoyable evening, but it got less than a full rave from me. Technical problems were too evident this time. This is the second of three appearances with SSV that I've heard conductor Tatsuya Shimono, and so far I'm less than enthused with his work. He's not bad, in fact he can be pretty good, but too often he's slow and a bit drab and undistinctive. And he's not the technical taskmaster some conductors are. Of previous SSV conductors, his style reminds me most of that of Mallory Thompson, who did not last the course.

The strangest thing that happened this evening came after the pre-concert talk. I heard someone behind me remark to his companion that he was surprised that the lecturer didn't mention that Shostakovich emigrated to New York. I turned around and said that was because no, he didn't. Shostakovich considered himself so Russian that he could never have brought himself to emigrate, no matter how badly the government treated him. You might have been thinking of his son, who did defect ...

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