Thursday, January 14, 2010

Steinbacher no-show

Arabella Steinbacher (pictured, right), who was scheduled to play the Dvorak Violin Concerto announced below, won't be playing with the Vancouver Symphony Jan. 16-18 because she suddenly became ill.

Instead, it'll be Jennifer Koh, a New York violinist who played in Vancouver about a year ago.

She's very good too, and known for taking a sort of post-modern approach to violin repertory. That is, she places music -- often very contemporary music -- in a context that typically goes back to J.S. Bach, the touchstone.

Koh will be playing the Dvorak concerto as well.

But don't overlook Steinbacher, who is an amazingly gifted young musician. I can't recommend her new CD strongly enough, on Pentatone Classics, where she plays the Dvorak, his F Minor Romance, and notably Karol Szymanowski's First Violin Concerto. This is a masterpiece all but unknown outside of Poland. Tremendously sensuous, with a free-form structure, and tremendously difficult to play. I haven't heard a more persuasive argument for it. It deserves to be a Western classic.

1 comment:

  1. I think it's wonderful that you've added some photos to the blog this week.

    Please keep posting regularly, looking forward to more reviews.