Fascinating, Flawed Genius
Herbert Von Karajan - Tchaikovsky - Symphony No. 6 review
22nd August 2006
Karajan has an inate ability to conjour lustrous rich sonorities from an orchestra. To some palattes this is overly sweet and self indulgent, often it is said at the expense of interpretative insight.
Watching this master at work (and as a conductor myself) I was struck by the minimilism of his approach. It was insightful to be able to watch him pull this performance out of a world class orchestra like this, playing 'at home' in the famed Musikverein in Vienna.
My recollection of the score is that it does NOT require double woodwind and here I felt the Karajan paradox at it's most acute. Such a great conductor believes in himself to the extent that he wilfully messes with Tchaikovsky's orchestration.
Having said that I enjoyed watching this DVD for the sheer opulence of the playing and to watch the great man at work. The perdormance is flawless, if a little lacking in 'Mvrinsky' edge or 'Silvestri' interpretation but it's worth the effort just to sit back and enjoy the mastery.