Splendours of the Viennese Classical Period
Jan Lisiecki, piano
Andrew Manze, conductor
Chamber Orchestra of Europe
It is one of Ludwig van Beethoven's most surprising, electrifying shifts of mood: after grasping blindly through the murkiness of a mysteriously fog-enshrouded introduction, within a few bars his Symphony No. 4 explodes into festive, even exuberant joy. The Englishman Andrew Manze is a conductor of the younger generation for whom the balance between historical and historically informed performance and spontaneous, heartfelt music-making in the here and now is a matter of course - especially with a versatile ensemble like the Chamber Orchestra of Europe. To begin the evening this team visits a somewhat neglected but charming symphony by Joseph Haydn: his 89th, in whose cheerful finale a sombre F minor episode emerges. Jan Lisiecki is the soloist in Mozart's moving, deceptively simple Piano Concerto KV 488. Born in Canada in 1995 to Polish parents, he had already amazed the piano world as a teenager. Pinchas Zuckerman, one of his many prominent collaborators, attests to his 'old soul'.