Peter Quantrill

Peter Quantrill  |  Oct 31, 2022  |  0 comments
This month we review: Hallé/Sir Mark Elder, Vienna State Opera/Welser-Möst, Bertrand Chamayou and Brabant Ensemble/Stephen Rice.
Peter Quantrill  |  Oct 11, 2022  |  0 comments
A midsummer pageant of seduction and celebration, dressed in French and English costumes – Peter Quantrill explores the history of this 'dramatick opera' on record

Yokels in drag, flying scenery and orange trees: even by the lavish standards of theatrical entertainment in late 17th century London, The Fairy Queen dazzled spectators of its premiere at the Dorset Garden Theatre. 'The Court and Town were wonderfully satisfy'd with it' said one contemporary source – and no wonder – 'but the Expences in setting it out being so great, the Company got very little by it'.

Peter Quantrill  |  Sep 27, 2022  |  0 comments
This month we review: Peter Donohoe, BBC SO/Sakari Oramo, Michelle Cann, New York Youth SO/Michael Repper, Vicky Chow and Lisette Oropesa, Dresdner Phil/Daniel Oren.
Peter Quantrill  |  Sep 20, 2022  |  0 comments
Mentor to Bernstein and Karajan, controversial chief of the NYPO, Mahler pioneer, the Greek conductor is finally receiving his due. Peter Quantrill says it's not before time

Leonard Bernstein once addressed the 'art' of conducting in scientific terms, saying it required 'an inconceivable amount of knowledge', 'a profound perception of the inner meanings of music' and 'uncanny powers of communication'. More ambitiously, 'the conductor must not only make his orchestra play; he must make them want to play. He must make the orchestra love the music as he loves it'.

Peter Quantrill  |  Aug 29, 2022  |  0 comments
This month we review: Mitsuko Uchida, Goiás PO/Neil Thomson, Choir of King's College LOND/Fort and Jakub Józef Orlinski/Michal Biel.
Peter Quantrill  |  Aug 12, 2022  |  0 comments
Written in the midst of personal crisis, the Second smiles and laughs with a humour that can be elusive. Peter Quantrill discovers which conductors land all the punchlines

Two years after the First Symphony, completed in 1800, Beethoven made a different kind of statement with the Second, on a grander scale, evident from the emphatic proclamation of D major rather than the First's quizzical gambit which deliberately contradicts its stated key of C. The Second seems to have been the longest symphony (by number of bars) composed up to that point in the genre's relative infancy – though Beethoven may have had in mind the spacious grandeur of Mozart's final symphony in D major, the 'Prague'.

Peter Quantrill  |  Aug 01, 2022  |  0 comments
This month we review: Oslo Philharmonic/Klaus Mäkelä, Peter Jablonski, Fidelio Trio and Chen Reiss; Jewish CO Munich/Daniel Grossmann.
Peter Quantrill  |  Jul 08, 2022  |  0 comments
Resistance fighter, modernist architect, electroacoustic pioneer: where to start with a composer whose music remains forever new? Peter Quantrill has some ideas...

It would be pleasing though wrong to contend that Xenakis's time has come, a century after his birth. For one thing, the Greek composer and his achievements were celebrated across the world during his own lifetime. Like Beethoven and Stravinsky before him, he enjoyed as many successes as scandals. For another, the stiff wind of modernism which blew through European culture during the first half of the last century has slackened off to a climate of gentle zephyrs.

Peter Quantrill  |  Jun 30, 2022  |  0 comments
This month we review: Fontanals-Simmons, Glynn, Aurora, Antoine Tamestit, Anaëlle Tourret and Stephen Hough.
Peter Quantrill  |  Jun 21, 2022  |  0 comments
Young man's music, emulating Classical ideals while coloured with wistfulness for something lost... Peter Quantrill on the recorded legacy of an elusive masterpiece

Ravel was a sharp-suited Parisian-about-town in his late 20s when he wrote the String Quartet during 1902-3. He had a decade of composition behind him, mostly piano pieces, but little to show for it. He didn't even have a graduation certificate from his years of study at the Paris Conservatoire, still less any recognition conferred by the coveted Prix de Rome, despite several unsuccessful attempts to win over the conservative judges while pointedly breaking their rules and fastidiously refining his own voice.