For Gutierrez fans, I thought I would forward this review of his recent
concert with our orchestra.
BPO reigns with majestic tones
By HERMAN TROTTER
News Music Critic
Television cameras ringed both the Kleinhans Music Hall stage and
balcony Saturday evening as the Buffalo Philharmonic Orchestra and
Music Director JoAnn Falletta presented a program of music by Rossini,
Respighi and, with pianist Horacio Gutierrez, Beethoven's "Emperor"
Concerto. The concert will be repeated at 2:30 p.m. today, with a
preconcert talk at 1:30.
The cameras were taping for a broadcast at 8 p.m. March 26 on WNED-TV
and FM to be called "Imperial Splendor." Happily, the performances
will support that title with room to spare.
The opening Rossini Overture to "The Italian Woman in Algiers" was
crisply done, with some deft woodwind solos and fine control of the
typically Rossinian sudden attacks, crescendos and accelerandos.
The opening of the "Emperor" Concerto left no doubt as to what we
were to hear. The grand orchestral chords were attacked heftily and
right on the nose. Gutierrez, who had brought his own piano for the
concerts, played the florid introductory lines with authority and
bravado, while the long orchestral passage that followed had the ring
Gutierrez pianism had its own breadth and majesty but without
sacrificing any clarity of articulation or the pointing up of detail.
He kept a good perspective on the music's larger picture, with the
moments of delicacy just as effective as the grandly stated passages.
There was a fine balance between soloist and orchestra and a palpable
The Adagio was played with great reverence, while Gutierrez handled
the ascending trills impeccably, yet with sensitivity to nuance and
dynamic shading. The same subtle detailing was later applied to the
wonderful rocking figures just before the segue into the Finale, in
which Gutierrez made the rising main theme sound full-toned and
bursting with energy, but not blustery, while the orchestra matched
the richness and solidity of sound.
Falletta conducted the first BPO performance of Respighi's "Botticelli
Triptych," proving that it should be heard more often. The shimmering
strings and pealing horn in "La Primavera," the fine bassoon solo,
haunting use of the hymn "Veni Emmanuel," the gorgeous string/wind
harmonies in "The Adoration of the Magi" and the great upsweep of
sound in "The Birth of Venus" were linked together in a radiantly
The blazing colors in the closing "Pines of Rome" by Respighi made
a superb contrast with the textural delicacy of "Botticelli." Its
opening razzle-dazzle, ecstatic climax coming out of the depths in
"The Catacombs," and gorgeous sonorities and nightingale song in "The
Janiculum" led into the inexorable marching, convulsive excitement
of "The Appian Way," which invariably brings an audience tumult.
This time was no exception.
"Linda Rogers" <[log in to unmask]>