Rubriik ‘ERSO Ameerikas 2013’

Estonian symphony impresses at Kravis. Cello soloist’s playing ranged from delicate to forceful (Joseph Youngblood, Palm Beach Daily News, 15.11.2013)

The Estonian National Symphony Orchestra gave an exuberant concert Wednesday evening at the Kravis Center.

Led by Russian-trained conductor Nikolai Alexeev with solo cellist Narek Hakhnazaryan, the orchestra played works by Veljo Tormis (b. 1930), Antonin Dvořák (1841-1904) and Johannes Brahms (1833-1897).

Nikolai Aleksejev

Nikolai Aleksejev

The Estonian National Symphony is a large orchestra with eight cellos, six double basses. The players were seated with the cellos on the conductor’s right and the second violins on his left.

Tormis’ Overture No. 2 opened the program. This is a forceful, vigorous work with impressive percussion and soaring strings. The flute, clarinet, trumpet and tuba are featured. There is one especially long crescendo. Altogether, this is a striking work and one that shows off the orchestra to its best advantage.

Narek Hakhnazaryan was the soloist in Dvořák’s Cello Concerto in B Minor, Opus 104. He was born in Armenia and studied in Yerevan, the capital, as well as at the Moscow Conservatory and the New England Conservatory.

His playing was amazing — there appeared to be no aspect of cello technique and interpretation of which he was not the master. His playing was forceful yet delicate. He has a wide range of dynamics, and he exploited the entire dynamic range of the cello. Extremely high passages were no problem for him, nor were extended passages in double stops.

Hakhnazaryan played one encore, Lamentatio (1998), by Italian composer Giovanni Sollima (b. 1962). He was all over the cello, and even sang to the instrument.

Narek Hakhnazaryan

Narek Hakhnazaryan

Symphony No. 2 in D, Opus 73 (1877) by Brahms closed the program.

It must be said that the orchestra overall, especially the strings, were unnecessarily loud, to the extent that they covered most of the other instruments, which had important parts. The loudness also had an effect on one’s perception of the formal structure of the music, since important details could not be heard. But the volume didn’t detract from the impressive playing of the French horns.

The orchestra itself played one encore: the intense Kodumaine Viis (“Homeland Melody”) by Heino Eller (1887-1970).

The Estonian National Orchestra is a marvel — the players are exuberant, but they also are devoted to the orchestra’s music.

Because this was a Regional Arts concert, a discussion preceded the performance. Barbara Barry, research fellow from the Institute of Music at the University of London, gave an informative lecture comparing Dvořák and Brahms.

LOE ARTIKLIT PALM BEACH DAILY NEWS’I KODULEHEL

Daytona Beach, Peabody Auditorium – turnee viimane, 15. kontsert

ERSO andis maestro Nikolai Aleksejevi juhatusel Ameerika-turnee viimase, viieteistkümnenda kontserdi Floridas Daytona Beachis.

Peabody Auditorium, Daytona Beach, Florida, 17.11.2013.

Peabody Auditorium, Daytona Beach, Florida, 17.11.2013.

Kontsert läks traditsiooniliselt menukalt, ettekandele tulid Tormise Avamäng nr 2 ja Dvořáki Tšellokontsert Narek Hakhnazaryani soleerimisel ning Tšaikovski Viies sümfoonia. Nagu juuresolevalt videolt näete, võis dirigent lisaloo ajal juba loorberitel puhata. Ta oli kindel, et ERSO lõpetab turnee võidukalt. Lisaloona kõlab  Prokofjevi Gavott “Klassikalisest sümfooniast”.

 

„Elagu Eesti!” – ovatsioonid, inspiratsioon (Annika Kuuda, Sirp, 15.11.2013)

ERSO, EFK ja dirigent Neeme Järvi Avery Fisher Halli laval proovi tegemas, 10.11.2013.

ERSO, EFK ja dirigent Neeme Järvi Avery Fisher Halli laval proovi tegemas, 10.11.2013.

Peab ütlema, et Eesti Filharmoonia Kammerkoori ja Eesti Riikliku Sümfooniaorkestri 10. novembril New Yorgi Lincoln Centeri Avery Fisher Hallis antud kontsert maestro Neeme Järvi käe all ei jätnud uudistama tulnud ameeriklasi ei ükskõikseks ega külmaks. Vastupidi – esinemine, millega EFK alustas ligi kaks nädalat kestvat USA turneed, küttis 2700-kohalise saali täis tänulike emotsioonidega, milleks andis alust väga hoolikalt just USA publikut silmas pidades valitud kava: Veljo Tormise avamäng nr 2, Arvo Pärdi „In principio” ja „Da pacem Domine”, Mozarti „Ave verum corpus” ja Jean Sibeliuse V sümfoonia. Vaheldusrikkad, emotsionaalselt ja dünaamiliselt väga varjundirohked tämbrid ja kooslaul-mäng olid need, mis inspireerisid juba Tormise avataktidest alates ka muusikuid endid. Olgugi et EFK on samas paigas üles astunud ka varem, 1990ndatel Tõnu Kaljuste käe all, leidsid ka koori kogenumad hääled, et tegemist oli Eesti muusikaloo seisukohalt vägagi märgilise kontserdiga, mille peategelasteks eranditult kõik Eesti omad muusikud.

AFHs toimunu pani rahva maestrole kiitust hüüdma ja püstijalu aplodeerima. Eestlaste vaimsusest sel novembri pühapäeval rääkisid ka värvikalt näiteks eaka väliseestlasest vanadaami üle saali korduvad hüüded kontserdi lõppedes: „Elagu Eesti, elagu Eesti, elagu Eesti!” Tuleb tunnistada, et kontsert läks korda ja oli taas hea meel olla eestlane!

Fort Lauderdale’i Broward Center – turnee 14. kontsert

Laupäevahommikune lend Atlantast Fort Lauderdale’i oli meie viimane riigisisene õhureis, järgmine lennuk suunab oma nina juba Euroopa poole.

Atlanta - vaade meie hotelli aknast, 15.11.2013.

Atlanta – vaade meie hotelli aknast, 15.11.2013.

Fort Lauderdale, kontserdisaalile kõige lähemal asunud kanal, 16.11.2013.

Fort Lauderdale, kontserdisaalile kõige lähemal asunud kanal, 16.11.2013.

Enne Fort Lauderdale’is maandumist lendasime üle Floridas asuva Evergladesi Rahvuspargi kirdenurga, tegemist on ühe maailma suurema säilinud mageveesooga, kus elab arvukalt alligaatoreid. Kõrgustest vaadates alligaatoreid küll ei paistnud, küll aga lõputuna tunduv muda. Samal õhtul Fort Lauderdale’i lähistel asuvasse hotelli jõudes saime tungiva hoiatuse hotelli läheduses asuvatesse veekogudesse ujuma mitte minna. Eks põhjuseks ikka need samad allogaatorid.

Fort Lauderdale sai linnaõigused 1911. aastal ning neli aastat hiljem sai sellest äsjaloodud Browardi maakonna keskus. Linna nimetus tuleneb aastail 1835–1842 toimunud sõja ajal siia aladele rajatud kindluste (ingl. k. fort) ning esimese kindluse rajamist juhtinud major William Lauderdale’i nimest. Tegemist oli ühe osaga mitmetest konfliktidest Floridas elanud pärismaalaste ehk seminoolide (üks indiaanisuguharu) ja USA vahelises sõjas (ametlikult: II seminoolide sõda). Tänu rohketele laevatatavatele kanalitele kutsutakse Fort Lauderdale’i ka Ameerika Veneetsiaks. (Seega juba teine “Veneetsia”, kuhu me oma reisil satume – Californias asuva Venice’i pisikesed kanalid ja sillakesed on Fort Lauderdale’i omade kõrval lausa päkapikumõõtu).

Fort Lauderdale'i Broward Center.

Fort Lauderdale’i Broward Center.

Broward Center for the Performing Art

  • avamisaeg: 1991
  • valmimine ideest teostuseni kestis 30 aastat, kuid tulemus on seda väärt, tegemist on ümbruskonna suurima ja parima esituskunstide keskusega
  • keskuse nimi tuleneb Browardi maakonna nimest
  • käimas on suurejooneline juurdeehitus, mis kannab tabavat nimetust “ENCORE!” ehk siis “lisa”, muusikalises kontekstis “publiku soovil esitatav lisapala”. Au-Rene Theater’s – keskuse suures saalis, kus esines ERSO – on juba uuendatud toolid, heli-, valgustus- ja ventilatsioonisüsteemid, juurdeehituste avamine on kavandatud järgmisse aastasse

Suurejooneline juurdeehitusprojekt "ENCORE!", 16.11.2013.

Suurejooneline juurdeehitusprojekt "ENCORE!", 16.11.2013.

Suurejooneline juurdeehitusprojekt “ENCORE!”, 16.11.2013.

Klassikalise muusika kontserdiseeria toob sel hooajal lisaks ERSO-le orkestritest siia jaanuaris New Yorgis resideeriva Orpheuse Kammerorkestri, veebruaris aga Ameerika-turneel olevad Peterburi Filharmoonikud dirigent Nikolai Aleksejeviga (!)

ERSO Ameerika-turnee eelviimane kontsert toimus dirigent Anu Tali käe all. On ju Anu Tali siin pea-aegu kohalik: möödunud nädalal andis ta  eduka debüütkontserdi Sarasota sümfooniaorkestri peadirigendina. Sarasota asub Florida läänerannikul, Fort Lauderdale’ist vaid 350 km kaugusel.

Proov Fort Lauderdale'i Browardi Keskuse Au-Rene Theater’s, 16.11.2013.

Proov Fort Lauderdale’i Browardi Keskuse Au-Rene Theater’s, 16.11.2013.

Kontserdi esimeses pooles kõlanud Tormise Avamäng nr 2 ja Dvořáki Tšellokontsert Narek Hakhnazaryani soleerimisel kui ka Tšaikovski Viies sümfoonia tõid publikult kuuldavale rõõmuhõiked ja südamliku aplausi. Encore’ina tuli kõigi rõõmuks ettekandele Heino Elleri “Kodumaine viis”.

Kontserdi finaaliks oli Tšaikovski Viies sümfoonia. ERSO ja dirigent Anu Tali, 16.11.2013.

Kontserdi finaaliks oli Tšaikovski Viies sümfoonia. ERSO ja dirigent Anu Tali, 16.11.2013.

Lõpuaplaus, 16.11.2013.

Lõpuaplaus, 16.11.2013.

Videoreportaaž kontserdipäevast Fort Lauderdale’is:

Fine cellist, homegrown music distinguish Estonian Symphony concert (Rex Hearn, Palm Beach ArtsPaper, 16.11.2013)

Estonia was one of the three Baltic states suppressed by Soviet Russia in 1940. Thursday night at the Kravis Center, this tiny state of 1.5 million people sent a credible symphony orchestra of 76 players to perform music by Tormis, Dvořák and Brahms in the Regional Arts Concert Series.

Kravis Center.

Kravis Center.

Independent since 1991, Estonia is closer to Finland geographically than Latvia and Lithuania, the other Baltic states, and their language is in the same linguistic family with the Finns. Why the programmers for the Estonian National Symphony Orchestra chose Brahms’ Second Symphony over works by Sibelius, Nielsen or Grieg, composers of Scandinavia, is puzzling, since the Brahms was not well-received. Perhaps they wanted to emphasize the Brahms-Dvořák friendship, a thin thread on which to hang a concert program that had its many ups and downs.

Luckily, the opening composition by the 83-year-old Veljo Tormis, called Overture No. 2 (1959), was highly representative of the northern character of these resilient Estonians. It began with very fast violin playing, joined by equally fast cellos as they built up to a strong orchestral sound reminiscent of the late William Walton’s music, particularly in occasional dissonant sounds from the brass section.

Then strings and brass answer each other many times with long singular chords until peace descends with an elegiac melody from the horns and winds. A four-note trumpet sound signals rapturous string playing overlaid by a melodic flute solo. A lone viola breaks the mood and the bassoons lurch in with bubbling comments. Horns introduce yearning strings as rolling timpani accompanies some fast string playing. Hearty brass and a solo trumpet join the fray.

Descending orchestral chords drawn from the first and second violins are interrupted by the rat-a tat-tat of trumpets, brass and timpani, ending the overture on a fine musical full stop. Exciting stuff from Tormis, whose works were banned by the Soviets at one time but were brilliantly played by this fine orchestra.

Dvořák’s Cello Concerto (in B minor, Op. 104), followed, with 25-year-old Armenian cellist Narek Hakhnazaryan as soloist. Winner of the 2011 Tchaikovsky Competition Gold Medal and the prestigious Young Concert Artists International Auditions in 2008, he strode on stage clad in dark pants, a white dress shirt worn outside the trousers and bright patent leather shoes.

After 10 minutes of playing, Hakhnazaryan took a handkerchief from under his right thigh, wiped his sweating brow and then proceeded to apply the wet kerchief to the strings of his cello. I’ve heard the greats ranging from Casals to Du Pré to Leonard Rose and Yo-Yo Ma, and none of them were overcome with this affectation. Put it down to traveling on the road where one has little time for exercise or calisthenics. However brilliant his playing, the three “wipe downs” were distracting.

Overall, young Hakhnazaryan tended to rush his performance, often getting ahead of the fine orchestral accompaniment. His playing in the lower register was beautifully expressive in the second movement. And the cadenza-style solo with flute and cello obbligato backed by viola, trumpet and bassoon, was wistfully delightful. Cellist Leo Stern, first to play this work, was surprised when told by Dvořák he hadn’t included a traditional cadenza, where the soloist shows off his technique.

The third and last movement begins march-like, with tough scales for the cello masterfully played, though at times I felt Hakhnazaryan’s bowing had too light a touch against the strong orchestral sound.

The Symphony No. 2 (in D, Op. 73) of Brahms, however, was a disappointment. Conductor Nikolai Alexeev began well, but the deterioration was so obvious by the end that this very savvy audience of 1,500 concertgoers gave the players a lackluster reception, unlike the rapturous reception for soloist, orchestra and conductor in the Dvořák, before intermission.

The first movement opened well, with occasional fluffs from the solo horn, and there were rough patches as well from the rest of the brass section, though they improved toward the end. In the second movement (Adagio non troppo), Alexeev took it too majestically, so that the upward sweep of the violins had hardly any impact. Also, individual solo statements were refined and not declarative enough because of the slow tempo.

The Allegro moderato third movement started off well enough with its tripping melody, but when double times, Brahms’ favored counterpoint rhythms were ineffective; the whole back and forth was labored. The Finale also began robustly, with good work from the woodwinds, but Alexeev stood like an automaton for the rest of it, simply counting time, and bringing off the symphony as an exercise in ordinary music rather than the masterpiece it is.

Too many concerts with too little rest between can try the finest of ensembles, of which this is obviously in the top rank. They give 30 concerts a year in their own Estonia Concert Hall in Tallinn, their capital city and have made over 500 tours in Europe, Siberia, Russia and these United States since they were formed in 1926. The Sibelius Second would have been a better selection.

For those interested, the solo cello encore before the intermission was the contemporary Italian composer Giovanni Sollima’s Lamentatio; the string orchestra at the end of the concert was Kodumaine Vis (Homeland Melody), by the 20th-century Estonian composer Heino Eller.

The Estonian National Symphony Orchestra appears tonight at the Broward Center Performing Arts, conducted by Anu Tali, a young Estonian conductor recently named director of the Sarasota Orchestra. Narek Hakhnazaryan plays the Dvořák concerto, and Ali conducts the Tormis overture and the Fifth Symphony of Tchaikovsky. The concert begins at 8 p.m., tickets start at $35. Call 954-462-0222 or visit.