Colin Clarke

Stravinsky The Rite of Spring, Webern Six Pieces Op 6, Berg Three Fragments from Wozzeck, Ligeti Mysteries of the Macabre

8:00, 14th December 2017

Barbara Hannigan (sop); London Symphony Orchestra/Sir Simon Rattle
LSO 3028 – DVD & Blu-ray

Sir Simon’s recent arrival at the helm of the LSO and their palpable close rapport seems to have brought the orchestra a new sense of purpose. The Webern is exquisitely coloured, its lyricism and long lines prioritised throughout.

The video format allows us to appreciate Hannigan’s choice of costumes, one red and sophisticated for the powerful, warm-toned Wozzeck fragments, one neither red nor sophisticated for the Ligeti. Clad as a gangly, hormone-saturated naughty schoolgirl, she delivers a performance of split-second accuracy and fantasy in Mysteries of the Macabre. Rattle leads the LSO to a blistering climax in Berg’s ‘Invention on a Tonality’.

Stravinsky’s Rite has long been associated with Rattle and here he presents a performance of subtlety and ferocity. The camera angles, often imaginative, seek out lines and shapes generated by the players.

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