Subject: I have found a DVD that I think you would enjoy
|Israel Berlin Philharmonic Joint Concert Tel Aviv|
Actors: Berlin Philharmonic, Israel Philharmonic
Genres: Music Video & Concerts, Musicals & Performing Arts
On the occasion of a tour of Israel by the Berlin Philharmonic the present archive material was produced and a recording made of the concert at which Germany?s flagship orchestra encountered its Israeli counterpart, the Is... more »
Documentary of a Moving Concert
J Scott Morrison | Middlebury VT, USA | 08/15/2003
(5 out of 5 stars)
"In April 1990, at the end of the Berlin Philharmonic's first-ever tour of Israel, the BPO and the Israel Philharmonic gave a joint concert in the Frederic Mann Auditorium in Tel Aviv. It was understandably an emotional event for all involved as well as being so for anyone who sees this DVD of that concert. It symbolized a coming-together of two cultures that had been so tragically in conflict sixty years before.
The concert itself consisted of the two orchestras playing the 'Psalm' movement from the First Symphony of Israeli composer, Paul Ben-Haim. Then the IPO alone accompanied a 14-year-old German violinist, Viviane Hagner, in Saint-Saëns's 'Introduction and Rondo Capriccioso for Violin and Orchestra.' Following this the BPO returned the favor by accompanying a young Israeli clarinetist, Sharon Kam, in Carl Maria von Weber's 'Concertino for Clarinet and Orchestra in E flat.' Both young soloists turned in wonderful performances, and who could miss the symbolism of a young German playing with the Israeli orchestra and a young Israeli soloing with the German orchestra?
Then the two orchestras combined again--the BPO in black tuxedos, the IPO in white dinner jackets--to play an incredibly nuanced performance of Ravel's 'La Valse.' It was utterly amazing to hear the delicacy and accuracy of such a huge assemblage of musicians. Again, there was some hidden symbolism: Ravel, a Jew, had composed the piece in homage to the waltz, product of Vienna, an earlier bastion of anti-Semitism.
This was followed by a powerful performance, again with both orchestras but with some shifting of principal players, of Beethoven's Fifth Symphony. I must say that it was moving to see BPO players sharing music desks with their IPO confreres.
After the concert Mr Mehta made a short speech about how long this important day had been in coming and then he introduced the mayors of Tel Aviv and Berlin to tumultuous applause from the capacity audience.
Also included on the DVD is an 11-minute documentary about the concert, how it came about and what it meant to its participants. There were views of the rehearsals along with comments by Mehta and Daniel Barenboim, himself a citizen of Israel and the conductor of the BPO on their just-concluded tour of Israel.
The DVD of this concert is satisfying for both the emotional and political reasons it was arranged, but also for the musical performances preserved. Both sound and sight are exemplary.