Jurowski Conducts Mahler 4

Birmingham International Concert Season 2010/11

Thu 2 Dec 7:30pm at Symphony Hall

London Philharmonic Orchestra
Vladimir Jurowski conductor
Steven Osborne piano
Christine Schäfer soprano

Beethoven Piano Concerto No 4 32’
Mahler Symphony No 4 54’

Few conductors have received the plaudits that have been awarded to Vladimir Jurowski, Chief Conductor of the London Philharmonic Orchestra. Described as ‘the most creative force in London’s orchestral life’ (Financial Times), his concert contains Mahler’s Fourth Symphony, one of the composer’s most relaxed works – classical, song-like and culminating in a representation of a child’s view of heaven. Steven Osborne is the soloist in the gentle lyrical poetry of Beethoven’s Fourth Piano Concerto. www.thsh.co.uk

6:15pm Pre-concert talk with Lyndon Jenkins and Vladimir Jurowski.

Part of The Birmingham Mahler Cycle 

Review by Geoff Read, MusicWebInternational:


… “Jurowski wonderfully recreated Mahler’s marking of Restful in the third Poco adagio movement, the emotional heart of the symphony. The heart-rending strains from the orchestra recalled the vision that had motivated the composer – the carved image of the departed atop a tombstone, a child asleep in death. The ebb and flow of the strings was indeed poignant and distinctively Mahlerian. I thought the role of second violins here was crucial, admirably led by Clare Duckworth. But this was a real team effort: subtle changes in pace were expertly handled by Jurowski; the autumnal colours of the woodwind were vividly set against the lilting strings; the surge in anticipation that led to the climactic depiction of the opening of heaven’s gates was fabulous. After the exultations of the horn and timpani, the tranquil runs on the harp in the coda produced the ‘My Mahler’ moment of the evening (see THSH’s website www.mymahler.com).”   …

Review by Elmley De La Cour, Birmingham Post:


… “Soloist, Stephen Osborne gave an effectively understated performance of the delicate work, conjuring subtle tones of pinpoint clarity from the piano. Against this, the orchestra provided a superb backdrop of velvety strings and sensitive wind. […]

[…] Mahler’s symphony, however, presented a dilemma. The orchestra played extremely well, creating the symphony’s nostalgic and almost haunting character from the very opening. The first movement’s passages of pizzicato and col legno were also given a spatial twist with the double basses positioned behind the woodwind. Soprano Christine Schafer was excellent, too, […]   Rating * * * *    “