A brilliant Prokofiev First Violin Concerto from Dallas Symphony concertmaster Alexander Kerr
Dallas Morning News
By: Scott Cantrell
Not the least of Jaap van Zweden's accomplishments during nine years as the Dallas Symphony Orchestra's music director has been attracting excellent new musicians. Among them is concertmaster Alexander Kerr, who was van Zweden's successor as concertmaster of the Royal Concertgebouw Orchestra in Amsterdam, and in more recent years a violin professor at Indiana University.
Kerr has been an important force in the dramatic improvement of DSO violins in recent seasons. That he remains a superb violinist himself was demonstrated in the first half of Thursday night's DSO concert, at the Meyerson Symphony Center. With van Zweden conducting, the featured work was Prokofiev's Violin Concerto No. 1.
Along with the Second Violin Concerto, this is Prokofiev at his most populist. From the sinuous lyricism of the opening through the dancing, flickering scherzo, with just enough fancy fingerwork to impress, this is music appealing even to people who think they don't like "modern music." (The concerto is now 100 years old.)