Sunday, 10 June 2012

Khachatryan, and Steinbacher

It is not often I listen to two different performances of the same work, one after the other. But today was an exception, and I plugged into two different recordings of Shostakovich's enigmatic second violin concerto. The first was with Sergei Khachatryan, with Kurt Masur and the Orchestre national de France. The second was with Arabella Steinbacher, with the Bavarian Radio Symphony Orchestra under Andris Nelsons.

Both violinists are excellent, of course. But I much prefer the recording with Nelsons, since he and the Bavarians are full participants with Steinbacher, whereas Masur and the Parisians just play the orchestral part. And Steinbacher also gets the better recording (Orfeo).

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