"Moments of true beauty and power"
Concert: Brahms German Requiem
Earlier this month, I had the pleasure of attending my first DSO performance. As part of a score study project, I was given the opportunity to listen to the DSO's presentation of Brahms' German Requiem. Prior to this project, I had never heard the piece in its entirety. I became really fond of the piece over the course of this project and was really excited to hear it performed by the DSO. In the end, I was not disappointed. I thought the soloists for the three sections that required them were outstanding and were easily the highlight for me. The chorus was responsible for some moments of true beauty and power throughout the piece.
In addition to this being my first attendance of a DSO performance, I had never been inside the Meyerson Symphony Center. That said, I was pleasantly surprised by how comfortable I was, despite the crowded auditorium. The acoustics of the auditorium did not fail to deliver either; the music was clear and had a nice, full sound.
Overall, I am very grateful for having been able to attend such an immensely enjoyable performance for such a wonderful piece of music. I will definitely attend more DSO performances in the future and encourage my friends and family to do the same.
"A magnificent blend of sound and silence"
Concert: Bach and Bruckner
The Dallas Symphony Orchestra never fails to amaze me. The DSO picked three great pieces to commemorate Johann Sebastian Bach’s 330th birthday and the beginning of spring, Bach’s Violin Concerto No. 1 in A Minor, his Violin Concerto No. 2 in E Major and Anton Bruckner’s “Romantic” Symphony No. 4 in E-flat Major. Soloist Gil Shaham was sensational as he applied effective baroque techniques and wonderful musicality and blend with the chamber orchestra. His energy on stage developed a remarkable tone that expanded throughout the atmosphere of McDermott Hall. After his performance, Shaham received a standing ovation and was called back on stage twice to acknowledge the mass of applause awarded to him.
The DSO was phenomenal in Anton Bruckner’s “Romantic” Symphony. The wonderful harmonies of brass filled the hall and the melodious call and response between the winds and strings developed a contrapuntal method that Bruckner is well known for, a hallmark that makes this symphony simply extraordinary and leads us to believe no doubt that Bruckner was one of the greatest organists of his time. Bruckner’s magnificent blend of sound and silence filled the hall until the last chord resonated, settled, and was immediately taken over by another standing ovation for the DSO.
This concert was amazing, and I dare add another “B” for Bruckner to the list of the three most famous “B’s” in classical composition.
"...once again blown away"
Concert: Symphony No. 3, "Scottish" by Felix Mendelssohn
Concert Date: 04/09/2015
Coming into this concert, I knew from previous experiences, that it would be undeniably good. Now, after doing a lot of background research on Mendelssohn's Symphony No. 3 ("Scottish"), I had even higher expectations for the concert, and I'm happy to say I was once again blown away. The delicacy and musicianship it takes to play a piece as dynamic as this symphony is no easy task even for a group as great as the DSO. Hearing them play did Mendelssohn's symphony way more justice than any recording could have. I'm truly grateful for getting the opportunity to hear them play!
"The piece is too intriguing to think of anything else to do except listen"
Concert: Symphonie Fantastique
Concert Date: 03/27/2015
This evening concert consisted of a brilliant performance of the Rachmaninoff Piano Concerto No. 1 by a guest pianist, and Berlioz's Symphonie fantastique, both conducted by maestro Jaap Van Zweden. Much like any other DSO performance, the concert was phenomenal.
The concerto definitely exceeded my expectations-not in that it was excellently played, because I expect nothing less than that from the DSO-but because the concerto grabbed my interest so much that it was difficult for me to move or, better yet, blink. This concerto is different than any other concerto I have ever heard!
And Symphonie fantastique is truly a masterpiece. The story unfolds in the performance itself. I found that during the entire performance the audience was completely quiet. Normally during classical performances, you hear the coughs cycling throughout the room. This was not the case for this piece, I can't recall any coughs in the performance. The piece is too intriguing to think of anything else to do except listen.
I strongly suggest that anyone considering going the concert to ATTEND! Even if not from DSO, please watch a performance of the Berlioz and Rachmaninoff. It's truly a wonderful experience!
And I have to give kudos to the English horn solo in the Berlioz, it was definitely the highlight of my experience!
"Nothing short of wonderful"
Concert: Rimsky-Korsakov Capriccio Espagnol
I want to start off by saying how incredible the Dallas Symphony was in performing the Capriccio Espagnol. It was simply nothing short of wonderful.
The 5 movement piece has so much energy and it carries it's momentum until the end, finishing off with a very enthusiastic finish.
What's very interesting is that Nikolai Rimsky-Korsakoff never went to Spain but wrote this Caprice trying to imagine how it was over there. He is known as a masterful orchestrator and it shows in this piece. There are many solos displayed throughout the entire piece, so everyone is able to be heard.
The Dallas Symphony is such a magnificent orchestra and played all of this extremely well. The solo violin, Nathan Olson was flawless and I really enjoyed his interpretation of the solos through the entire piece.
Overall it was a great performance, and the Prokofiev Symphony 3 and Mozart Piano Concerto were also wonderful as well.
"Slow movement of Brahms is easy favorite"
Concert: Strauss and Brahms
Richard Strauss' Ein Heldenleben, or A Hero's Life was played along side Brahm's Piano Concerto No. 1. Brahm's 2nd movement of this concerto was easily my favorite. This slow movement, which was written specifically for Clara Schumann, his love interest, is nice break from the easily recognizable and strongly themed first movement. All-in-all a great performance.
"A little bit of everything"
Concert: Rachmaninoff, Dvořák, Chavez, and Bates
This concert had a little bit of everything for everyone, Rachmaninoff, Dvořák, Chavez, and Bates. The orchestra's performance of the varied pieces was enthralling and absolutely wonderful. My favorites were Signing a India and Liquid Interface. The Chavez was energetic and lively, and the Bates was something new I never heard before and really enjoyed.
-Nayely Vargas Ramos
"So much passion and emotion"
Concert: Strauss's Death and Transfiguration
Concert Date: 04/13/2013
The DSO did an absolutely fantastic job on this piece! They did very well at interpreting the underlying story of the piece and applying it the way they sounded. Sitting in the audience, I was easily able to picture the story in my head. The conductor did a very good job of leading the orchestra through the different "movements" of the piece. There was so much passion and emotion. Spectacular job!
"Impeccable performance and superb composition"
Concert Date: 03/01/2013
I really admire Joaquín Rodrigo’s passion with which he wrote this piece and although the orchestra in combination with the guitar is not the most powerful combination, it spoke to me on a number of levels that had a strong impact on me. The second movement embodied feelings of remorse and sadness that Rodrigo so elegantly conveyed throughout the movement. Immediately to my sides, people were crying making it hard to keep dry eyes. All in all, an impeccable performance and superb composition.
"Aura of sound"
Concert Date: 02/28/2013
The first half of the Mahler's Mighty 6th concert was incredible and surprising because I had no idea that the recorder could sound like that. The tone clearly projected through the entire room and the soloist played at increasingly fast tempos. After intermission, the symphony led the audience into a complete aura of sound that continued to rise and fall. The unique percussion such as the prominent timpani were used to vary the sound and keep the music interesting. They did a wonderful job!
"I was transported to Spain..."
Concert Date: 02/15/2013
It's amazing how Debussy can transform a musical idea into something completely new. Conductor Julian Kuerti did a great job of realizing the falls and rises of this piece and making sure that each section of the orchestra was doing its job to make an impression on the audience. I was transported to Spain; the explosive first movement moved me there, and the tambourine and castanets kept me there. It was a beautiful performance, and I am thankful to the symphony for giving me this experience!