Classical review: NZ Symphony Orchestra

Miguel Harth-Bedoya, Stefan Jackiw
New Zealand Herald

The spry soloist, Stefan Jackiw roved the work's expansive first movement, exploring every thematic nook and cranny with his orchestral colleagues and the Joachim cadenza was very much his own, thanks to its remarkable sense of improvisation. The Adagio, impeccably autumnal from its first bar, had Jackiw extending the composer's soaring lines into passionate exchanges with the musicians around him.


After interval, Tchaikovsky's Fourth Symphony took the evening to a rousing climax as Harth-Bedoya, conducting without a score, knows just how to fire up an old warhorse.
Yet, it was not all brash brilliance. In the first movement, the conductor underplayed some of the melodramatic urgency that can be read into this score and brought out unexpected rhythmic inflections in the pizzicato dash of its third movement. The irrepressible rush of Tchaikovsky's finale burst forth with the sort of splendour that could well have competed with the bells and cannons of his 1812 overture.