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Blake Pouliot steals the "show" from orchestra tamer

02.23.17
Blake Pouliot
Le Devoir

By Christophe Huss
It’s too bad for the Thursday and Saturday audiences of this concert. They will miss the highlight of the event — that is, the performance given by 22-year-old Ontario violinist Blake Pouliot, winner of the OSM-Manulife Contest in November 2016.…Blake Pouliot performed the formidable and magnificent Violin Concerto by Korngold. He did it much better than the well-known Daniel Hope, whom I saw struggling in Ottawa. What is formidable about Pouliot is this ease and apparent relaxation he shows, much like the harpsichordist Jean Rondeau. Pouliot puts the listener at ease and makes them receptive to what he has to say, executing the concerto with a superb sound and well-placed sweetness.

Passing from admirable to overwhelming, there is even a little something in my ears that I can hardly define, a kind of brilliance, with sharp harmonics, and a singing strength in the upper register to equal that of the lower. In short, he displays various elements of rich sound that the great Kavakos possessed when he played this concerto here last season. Pouliot also benefited from superb accompaniment by the orchestra, and a hat-trick with the intervention of the glorious sounding horns in third movement.
Read the full review.