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French National Orchestra, Valery Sokolov and director Vasily Petrenko at the Théâtre des Champs Elysées

Monday, 20 December 2010 , ora 11.04

There are many young talented musicians who deserve to have the chance to play on important stages, especially in Paris, where, there have been invited lately more soloists who are less than thirty years of age and directors who are less than thirty-five years of age. The aforementioned are violinist Valery Sokolov, the winner of the George Enescu Competition in 2005 and Vasily Petrenko who directed in Paris in October a very beautiful interpretation of the opera Evgheni Oneghin by Tchaikovsky. His performance at The Opéra Bastille was a true revelation to many people. Unfortunately, the concert of December 16th, 2010, at the Théâtre des Champs Elysées which you listened to during a live transmission on Radio Romania Music, did not live up to our expectations. Vasily Petrenko has not become a symphonic conductor because, firstly, he could not conduct the Violin Concerto by Sibelius. Violinist Valery Sokolov could not get accustomed to floating on the waves between the French National Orchestra and the conductor's indications that were more domineering than those during the first part. And he did that modestly.

The young violinist was being eagerly waited on the Paris stage, but neither the circumstances, nor his interpretation, rather school-like could prove the real value of Sibelius' atmosphere. It is a pity and a torment to have a conductor who does not listen to the soloist. Fortunately, the situation became clearer in Symphony No. 5 by Prokofiev. The orchestra played homogeneously and energetically in the distinctive and most difficult parts; it was receptive to the effects required by the conductor. Prokofiev's work enjoyed intense sounds as much as accents, rhythms, lyricism and colours... but something seemed to lack, though. The whole attention was focused on the details meant to give shape to a more beautiful interpretation, which was a success, but... this seemed to have left out the background, namely, the music itself...

Alexandra Diaconu
Translated by Elena Daniela Radu and Andreea Velicu
MA students, MTTLC, Bucharest University