Bychkov Conducts Tchaikovsky's Fifth Symphony
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The last date listed for Bychkov Conducts Tchaikovsky's Fifth Symphony was Saturday September 8, 2012 / 8:00pm.
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Reviews & Ratings
Featured review from Robert C. Lang
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Last evening I attended the San Francisco Symphony for performances of the Tchaikovsky 5th Symphony and the Bruch Violin Concerto No. 1, Semyon Bychkov conducting. Without a doubt I now have a new found appreciation for the Tchaikovsky 5th which in recent years had completely fallen off my play list.
First a few words on the Bruch Violin Concerto. I expected an excellent performance from Pinchas Zukerman and that was exactly what we got. There is certainly not as much “there” as can be found in the other big 3 German violin concertos but it is more accessible and brings immense enjoyment. I am satisfied with the several recordings I own including the BIS SACD with Vadim Gluzman as soloist. At this point I have no need to look further.
The Tchaikovsky 5th is a completely different matter. Leading up to the concert it dawned on me that I could not remember the last time I had even bothered to listen to the 5th. In recent years I ranked it toward the bottom of my favorite Tchaikovsky symphonies, certainly behind the Manfred, 6th, 4th, and 1st. So, prior to the concert I decided to listen to a recording as a “refresher”. I was quite surprised that I had but a single performance in my multi-channel collection, the Kobayashi/Exton recorded in 1999. That is unusual for me. I generally have multiples of most works I enjoy, especially warhorses. Clearly I had listened to the 5th no more than once or twice in the last 15 years.
But as I listened to the Kobayashi/Exton release the music, the melodies came back as if the symphony had never been off my regular playlist. It was as if I could conduct the symphony myself (yeah right). This told me that I “used to” really enjoy this symphony. And sure enough I checked my Lp and CD collection and found ample recordings of the Tchaikovsky 5th. So what happened?
I think somewhere along the line I just grew tired of the work. And it took the *excellent* performance last night by Bychkov and the San Francisco to spark a reawakening. I must say that the orchestra was in fine form. During the summer months the orchestra is not always finely tuned I think because of substitutes necessitated by vacations, numerous visiting conductors, etc. But last night I didn’t see a lot of unfamiliar faces and Bychkov is a “regular” guest conductor in San Francisco. In fact, I will see him next week, too!
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It was a delite to come to the first concert of the SFS! Thank you so much, and what a concert it was! From the talk telling us to watch the talk betw the winds and horns and violins in Tchai, to the great Bruch and 5th Tchai, Wagner, altogether a...continued
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Although I sat in the very last row at the top back, the sound quality was superb and I enjoyed the concert immensely.
Unfortunately some of the patrons around me behaved as if they were at the ball park (talking and taking photos), especially...continued
Quotes & Highlights
“Zukerman again seemed the forever-young virtuoso: expressively resourceful, infectiously musical, technically impeccable, effortless. As usual, it was a joy to be in his musical company.” —Los Angeles Times
Inside Music, an informative talk free to ticketholders, begins one hour prior to the concert.
Meet Pinchas Zukerman for a CD signing in the Symphony Store following the September 6 and 8 concerts.
Semyon Bychkov conductor
Pinchas Zukerman violin
San Francisco Symphony
Wagner – Overture to Tannhäuser
Bruch – Violin Concerto No. 1
Tchaikovsky – Symphony No. 5
Two close friends of the SFS, Semyon Bychkov and Pinchas Zukerman, join the Orchestra in opening the season. The gorgeous melodies of Bruch’s concerto glow in the hands of the gifted Zukerman. If Tchaikovsky didn’t invent Russian Romanticism, he surely perfected it. Afraid that he might be “played out” at 48, he soon completed his awesome Fifth Symphony, a work unmatched in charting the journey from the melancholy of desperate longing to the triumph of the spirit.