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Gala From Berlin - Invitation to the Dance
Gala From Berlin - Invitation to the Dance
Genres: Music Video & Concerts, Musicals & Performing Arts
NR     2004     1hr 37min

Invitation to the Dance is the 2001 New Year's Eve Gala Concert with the Berlin Philharmonic. The annual concert is famous for having a varied program from year to year, and in 2001 conductor Daniel Barenboim treated the w...  more »


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Movie Details

Genres: Music Video & Concerts, Musicals & Performing Arts
Sub-Genres: Other Music, Classical
Studio: Euroarts
Format: DVD - Color
DVD Release Date: 11/16/2004
Release Year: 2004
Run Time: 1hr 37min
Screens: Color
Number of Discs: 1
SwapaDVD Credits: 1
Total Copies: 0
Members Wishing: 2
Edition: Classical
MPAA Rating: NR (Not Rated)
Languages: English

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Movie Reviews

The BPO Dances
J Scott Morrison | Middlebury VT, USA | 11/25/2004
(5 out of 5 stars)

"What a wonderful idea for a New Year's Eve Concert--nothing but dance music, from Bach to the present day played by one of the world's greatest orchestras! My only concern on starting to view this DVD was that Daniel Barenboim has never been one of my favorite conductors (nor pianist, either, for that matter) and even if he had been, it would be hard for me to imagine him being in his element with the rather lighter fare on this program. I associate him with the heaviest Germanic literature. And indeed I thought I was going to be correct in my concern at the beginning of this concert. It starts with a straightforward and rather boring performance (albeit with perfect intonation and split-second ensemble) of the 'Gavotte' from Bach's Third Orchestral Suite. But when they move into the 'Minuet' from Mozart's Divertimento in D, K. 382, something miraculous happens. Suddenly there is grace and ease and delight. From that point forward, the program goes from strength to strength. Barenboim had the wit to vary his program just enough that one was always a little surprised. For instance, Dvorák's exciting 'Slavonic Dance in G minor,' and Tchaikovsky's sweeping 'Waltz of the Flowers' are followed by Sibelius's 'Valse triste' in a slower-than-usual rendition that almost has one weeping for the beauty of both the melancholy and the perfection of the playing. Another unusual selection for what is, after all, a pops concert is the 20-minute 'Dances from Galánta' by Zoltán Kodály, played with finesse and fire in equal measure.

It has been quite some time since I saw a video of the Berlin Philharmonic and I was startled to see how young it has become. There is hardly a member who appears to be beyond his or her forties. I didn't recognize any of the principals except for the long-time leader of the violists, Wolfgang Christ. (There is a first violinist who looks like a young Hillary Clinton.) And I can't convey how impressed I am with their playing; a Rolls Royce among orchestras.

The crowning glories of this concert, aside from the two Strauss selections, the 'Emperor' Waltz and 'Thunder and Lightning,' are the Latin American pieces. I was a bit surprised at their inclusion but then remembered that, after all, Barenboim was born in Argentina. 'A fuego lento' by Horacio Salgán is a sultry tango done by the BPO with extraordinary subtlety. José Carli's sassy habañera 'El firulete,' was played as an encore. But the final piece on the concert (before the two encores, the other one being Brahms's 'First Hungarian Dance'), which had the rather staid Berlin audience on their feet, was that old chestnut of a samba, 'Tico tico,' by Zequinha Abreu (in a stunningly exciting arrangement by Cliff Colnot). Barenboim set his forces in motion and then leaned back and smiled contentedly at them when he wasn't moved to do a kind of samba of his own on the podium. It was at this moment that I began to see that my own impression of Barenboim as a rather dour fellow might be in error. He was clearly having the time of his life, as were the audience and, I confess, this viewer.

A festive concert in a marvelous set of performances by perhaps the best orchestra in the world.

Scott Morrison"
Simply incredible...
Daniel McGlaun | Indianapolis IN, USA | 03/10/2006
(5 out of 5 stars)

"My fourth DVD of this most perfect of orchestras, and they keep getting better. If you want to see the best musicians in the world on their instruments, playing in a manner that is simply not possible to be any better than, in as varied musical settings as you can imagine on one single medium, this is it. These people are simply beyond all human ability in technique, ensemble and musicianship, and you will be swept away instantly by every minute of it. If you have ever played a musical instrument in your life, and have never seen Berlin play, you will not believe it. Get this DVD."
Invitation to the Dance - Barenboim
Joyce Tarvin | Burnaby, B.C. Canada | 08/11/2006
(5 out of 5 stars)

"Thoroughly enjoyed this DVD made most enjoyable by the excellent filming of this concert and a nice selction of pieces making up an "Invitation to the Dance". Of course the fine playing of the Berlin Philharmoniker with maestro Daniel Barenboim goes without saying!"
Tico-tico no fubá
Pedro R. C. Solberg | Rio de Janeiro,Brazil | 11/04/2007
(5 out of 5 stars)

"I ordered this CD because I had heard of this fantastic rendering of Tico-Tico no Fubá ( composed by the Brazilian Zequinha de Abreu ).
It is absolutely brilliant, as the reaction of the public clearly shows."