Subject: I have found a DVD that I think you would enjoy
|A Night of Rhythm and Dance / Susan Graham Mari and Momo Kodama Eitetsu Hayashi Kent Nagano Berlin|
Actors: Berlin Philharmonic, Beintus, Ravel, Jiping, Gerschwin
Genres: Music Video & Concerts, Special Interests, Musicals & Performing Arts
Similarly Requested DVDs
Maybe Next Year ...
J Scott Morrison | Middlebury VT, USA | 06/06/2006
(3 out of 5 stars)
"This DVD of a Waldbühne Berlin concert -- the closing concert of the Berliner Philharmoniker season taking place in a huge wooded outdoor amphitheater -- is from 2000. The conductor is an American well-known in Berlin, Kent Nagano. It's very much a mixed bag with some really quite nice performances and some rather humdrum things interspersed. (And although it's called 'Rhythm and Dance' there's no dancing -- just a couple of Ravel works with dance origins.) It begins with an indifferent arrangement for two pianos and orchestra of Gershwin's 'I Got Rhythm.' This is followed by a marvelous Ravel 'La Valse. Then we get 23 minutes of traditional Japanese wadaiko drumming which, although spectacular for a short period quickly, for me, wears out its welcome. In all fairness the youngish audience ate it up. The drummer is Eitetsu Hayashi who cuts a dashing figure. The drumming is then followed by a boring suite made from the film score for the Chinese movie 'Farewell, My Concubine.' It's one of those hybrid scores featuring traditional Chinese instruments and a full symphony orchestra.
My interest was engaged again then by an absolutely smashing Daphnis et Chloé Suite No. 2 with some incredible playing by the Berliner Philharmoniker (which, by the way, seems to include a number of players not regularly in the orchestra). Nagano shapes a delicately nuanced reading.
Then comes a number of Gershwin songs in clumsy arrangements sung expertly (but poorly miked) by Susan Graham. Her 'Summertime' is stunning but she doesn't do as well in the up-tempo numbers like Fascinatin' Rhythm and, as an encore, I Got Rhythm. The concert concludes with the traditional Berlin pops concert closer, Paul Lincke's 'Berliner Luft'. This is the BPO's answer to the Vienna Philharmonic's traditionally raucous New Year's performance of the Radetsky March with the audience on their feet clapping in rhythm (and whistling, too).
I suspect there is an audience for whom this DVD would be completely enjoyable. I just had difficulty, old fogey that I am, appreciating the drumming and the Chinese fluff.