– New York Philharmonic – Zubin Mehta, Cond. Andras Schiff, Piano – May, 1986 – Gordon Skene Sound Collection –
Another historic concert this week. The New York Philharmonic, led by Zubin Mehta and featuring the legendary pianist Sir Andras Schiff in this 1986 concert featuring the music of Weber,Beethoven, Haydn and Tchaikovsky.
Starting off with the overture to Oberon by Carl Maria von Weber. Then Andras Schiff joins the orchestra in a performance of Beethoven’s Third Piano concerto. After intermission, Zubin Mehta is joined by New York Philharmonic co-principal Trumpeter Philip Smith to play Haydn’s Trumpet Concert in E-Flat Major. And the concert concludes with a performance of Francesca da Rimini by Tchaikovsky.
Good music making all around, with Schiff in top form. A prolific studio performer with a huge catalog of highly acclaimed recordings, Schiff has been affiliated with the forward-thinking ECM Records label since 1997 – adding a shade of prestige to an already highly regarded label.
Former Music Director of the L.A. Philharmonic, Zubin Mehta was associated with the New York Philharmonic, beginning in 1978 and going until 1991. He’s been associated with a large number of orchestras all over the world throughout the years, starting with his initial tenure with the Montreal Symphony from 1961 to 1967, when he went to Los Angeles and became a staple in the musical diet of that city.
Over the years, Zubin Mehta has become one of the most recognizable and sought-after conductors on the concert stage and recording studio. Like Schiff, Mehta has a vast catalog of recordings – many of which have been Grammy winners as well as best-sellers, which is no small feat in the Classical Music business.
Schiff’s handling of the Beethoven 3rd Piano concerto is particularly nice, and is warmly received by the audience.
You probably know all these pieces – if not, here’s one to sink your teeth into. The nice thing about Classical Music is that, even though there are a number of recordings of any particular piece, they are all different in their way and they all bring something different to the table. Because you can’t stray very far from the notes-as-written (like you can with Jazz), you can interpret those notes in a wide range of ways, and it’s all down to a point-of-view. And to quote Igor Stravinsky: “real freedom is achieved, once the restrictions are set up”.
Goes for life too.