Wednesday, November 16, 2016

Julie does Justice to Grieg

The DeKalb Symphony, under Music Director Fyodor Cherniavsky, began their most recent concert with the Prelude to Act III of Lohengrin, by Wagner.  It is a short piece and the orchestra seemed to have a few warming up problems, but it ended up to be quite a nice performance.   This was followed by Brahms Symphony No. 2. Cherniavsky led a stirring interpretation and the orchestra was very good, albeit a bit thin sounding for the rich sonorities of Brahms.  The final work was Grieg's Piano Concerto in A minor with the luminous Julie Coucheron.  She gave a nearly note-perfect performance that demonstrated her deep commitment to her fellow-countryman Grieg.  She effectively presented the work's dynamics, helping to increase the power of the music.  Her performance was the equal of anything heard from major soloists in Atlanta's Symphony Hall. One can only hope that her solo concert career continues to grow.

Ms. Coucheron performed on a Bechstein grand. Its sound is much tighter than the usual Steinway concert grand, which seemed to make the high end more clear but tended to be less full and vibrant in the low end.

The only disappointment in the concert was the sound of the air handling equipment in the Marvin Cole Auditorium of Georgia State University's Clarkston Campus.  It provided an unwelcome dull noise that occasionally distracted from an otherwise fine evening of music.

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