Juraj Valcuha conducts Stefan Jackiw playing Korngold’s Violin Concerto

Stefan Jackiw
Classical Source

By Colin Anderson

Given Erich Wolfgang Korngold's Violin Concerto featured on the DSO’s recent tour of Asia with Leonard Slatkin, the soloist being Akiko Suwanai, and the orchestra’s send-off concert including it was webcast to the World (July 9), it was perhaps a surprise to find it returning so soon. That said, it’s a fine and lovely piece (based on several of the composer’s Hollywood scores), full of romance, beauty, colour and exhilaration; and, anyway, Stefan Jackiw and Valcuha collaborated in the most positive way, the violinist technically secure and musically passionate (rich-toned, and silvery in the top register) – as well as exquisite and rapturous in the slow movement –, the conductor securing a suave accompaniment that was as delicate and detailed as it was blossoming and red-blooded. Their bond continued in the Finale, taken just about as fast as it can go, and was a romp, precision-tooled, but also with time for delicious lyricism, a touch of bassoon-humour, and, when needed, a drawing-back of tempo to give some closing-credits expanse. This was thoroughly impressive from all concerned, and if Jackiw had offered an encore it would have been very welcome.

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