Manfred Honeck & Igor Levit
Information about the programme
“An orchestra of wailing and jubilant voices”: thus Robert Schumann described the piano playing of Johannes Brahms. Now Igor Levit, last season’s artist-in-residence, returns to the BRSO with Brahms’s First Piano Concerto, the very work with which the composer forged his path from chamber music to the symphony. Here the “voices” of the solo instrument and the orchestra blend into an intensive dialogue. Dvořák’s Eighth Symphony radiates the relaxed and cheerful holiday mood of the little village of Vysoká. “The melodies just drop into my lap”, the composer enthused, and indeed the symphony seems to “emerge directly from Bohemia’s natural surroundings and the Czech people”, to quote Dvořák’s enraptured biographer Otakar šourek. With this symphony Manfred Honeck conducts one of Dvořák’s most popular works, revealing him to be a Czech national composer to the very core.