Friday, January 22, 2010

Ingo Metzmacher's got what l'Orchestre de Paris need

L'Orchestre de Paris has everything to be among the world's top orchestra and yet they are not. They are irregular: they can be near perfect but also messy and flat. They are good more often than not, but GREAT - very seldom, if you ask me. Still, each time you listen to them play you could tell that they have a ginormous potential and you kinda feel sorry that their performances don't match that potential. I believe they need a suitable music director to do that extra step and improve them to that level at which they become great. For years they've been lead by Christof Eschenbach and there are still many ups and downs, which makes me believe that Eschenbach is not the leader they actually need...

Tonight Ingo Metzmacher demonstrated how this orchestra can be conducted to sound as any world's top orchestra. He conducted firmly and carefully and they delivered a very-very strong performance of the Britten's  War Requiem. I'm a sucker for a big choir & big orchestra. Add to that the top notch soloists : Paul Groves, Matthias Goerne and Indra Thomas - and all my fatigue was gone the minute the concert had started.

As I said, Ingo did his magic and the orchestra sounded exceptionally good. OK, there's still room for improvement but if they played steadily like they did tonight I'd be their biggest fan.

Whoever invited Paul Groves to sing in this Requiem is a true connoisseur of voices: Paul's fitted like a glove for this part. Bravino! Matthias Goerne was very good too, but my heart was knocked by the voice of Indra Thomas. That girl can sing high with an astonishing ease, and yet her voice is plain/rich and powerful. Just like I love it. This was my first time to listen to her singing live and I want it more  :)

Benjamin Britten - War Requiem

Choeur de l'Orchestre de Paris
Ingo Metzmacher : conductor
Indra Thomas : soprano
Paul Groves : tenor
Matthias Goerne : bass

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