Berg; Mahler; Wagner

Our rating 
5.0 out of 5 star rating 5.0

COMPOSERS: Berg; Mahler; Wagner
LABELS: Medici Arts/Ideale Audience International
ALBUM TITLE: Berg; Mahler; Wagner
WORKS: Three Pieces for Orchestra, Op. 6 – Berg; Das klagende Lied (1880 original version) – Mahler; Parsifal – Prelude – Wagner
PERFORMER: David Christopher Ragusa, Marisol Montalvo (soprano), Hedwig Fassbender (mezzo-soprano), Michael Hendrick (tenor), Anthony Michaels-Moore (baritone); London Philharmonic Choir & Orchestra/Vladimir Jurowski
CATALOGUE NO: 3056808 (NTSC system; Dolby 5.1; 16:9 anamorphic)


Filmed concerts may be the way forward. The only pity about this one is that BBC cameras weren’t present for Vladimir Jurowski’s inaugural concert as the LPO’s new principal conductor, so all credit to this French-based, largely British-staffed team for documenting the occasion. The cogently-planned programme works magnificently in execution. Mahler’s sprawling saga, Das klagende Lied, is certainly dramatic enough to be filmed and though Jurowski’s conducting is precise, its story can be read through his eyes and animated facial expressions. The soloists throw themselves into their choppy parts with operatic verve. Jurowski’s stage experience with Parsifal and Wozzeck informs an equally electrifying first half. Wagner’s Prelude and apotheosis meet not with cathedral reverence but with muscular-Christianity directness. Berg’s Three Pieces – each of which ought to be subtitled here – reveal miracles of preparation and a test of the newly-refurbished hall’s warmer acoustics. Jurowski is thoughtful and unegotistical in the 50-minute accompanying interview, and you can watch him closely in the second DVD which places the ‘conductor camera’ in a box in the corner of the screen. How wonderful to have this record of Jurowski’s official start. David Nice