Britten Violin Concerto / Cincinnati Symphony Orchestra
www.cincinnati.com May 5, 2017
By JANELLE GELFAND
[Midori] delivered a riveting performance of the Britten Violin Concerto with the Cincinnati Symphony Orchestra [and Robert Treviño]. She sailed through its treacherous technical challenges, taking her time to communicate its lyrical passages with breathtaking beauty. She phrased with emotion and a pure, sweet tone in the first movement, ending with ethereal sounds high in the stratosphere. Her playing was interior, and every note had meaning. The second movement, a diabolical scherzo, was a contrast of driving, supercharged figures capped by a stunning solo cadenza.
It all seemed effortless. Yet no matter how intense the technical challenges, Midori’s tone on her 1734 Guarnerius del Gesu violin was always one of beauty. The finale, a “passacaglia”, was the emotional core of the work. Here, the violinist approached each phrase with feeling and ever-changing color. Her final, high trill on the violin seemed to stretch into infinity.