3 of 3 people found the following review helpful
Superb concert with close to definitive versions of all items
, 23 Nov. 2011
This review is from: Nobel Prize Concert (Euroarts: 2057894) [Blu-ray]  (Blu-ray)
This is a particularly rewarding concert and contains close to definitive versions of all items.
As regards the actual performances and artists concerned - the conductor, Temirkanov, is a highly experienced Russian conductor and has already appeared on Blu-ray where he conducts most of a gala concert at St. Petersburg. Curiously the Shostakovich Festive Overture is the same opening piece with the Russians playing even faster but not quite so well recorded. Both versions are excellent and exciting. Temirkanov's style is that of a disciplined conductor who knows how to get a dramatic and exciting response from players who very much rise to the occasion. He is also an extremely attentive accompanist. In this case he responds to every nuance in Argerich's definitive performance of the Ravel concerto. You will not hear better. Nor are you likely to hear a more compelling version of the Prokofiev suites. You have to go back 50 years to a famous version on CD of Ancerl conducting an inspired Czech Philharmonic to get a performance of this calibre.
Martha Argerich, of course, is well-respected as one of the outstanding pianists of her generation - some would say the outstanding pianist of almost any generation! Added to this, she has an enviable reputation for her interpretation of this Ravel concerto. Among her rare CD performances is her version of the concerto accompanied by Abbado and the Berlin Philharmonic. This current performance is by no means its inferior in terms of execution and in addition it brings an unmistakable 'live occasion' excitement as well as the pleasure of seeing Argerich actually in concert. Her Chopin Mazurka encore is an exercise in perfection.
The imaging is crisp with involving and detailed camera work typical of the experienced Paul Smaczny and his team. The sound is presented in excellent DTS-HD 5.1 as well as stereo.
In summary, in my opinion this is a particularly fine concert with outstanding performances of major repertoire and recorded very well indeed. It is very likely that this will give considerable pleasure and satisfaction to the great majority of purchasers. It seems completely reasonable therefore to rate this as a 5 star issue on any count.
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