Entries by David Lee

Bach Harpsichord Concertos 1 – Edinburgh International Festival – The Scotsman

Ken Walton, The Scotsman★★★★ Is there a venue more perfect for this 5-concert series of Bach’s Keyboard Concertos than the intimate 18th century St Cecila’s Hall?…Required to top it off are musicians and performances of equal calibre, which is what began to emerge as duelling harpsichordists Mahan Esfahani and Aapo Häkkinen, along with with members […]

Bach Harpsichord Concertos 2 – Edinburgh International Festival – The Scotsman

Ken Walton, The Scotsman★★★★ The “new” material, he added, came from a 1726 cantata bearing the same theme, so the task was to do “what Bach would have done” and “turn it into a harpsichord concerto”. The result was largely convincing, strangely scored (by Bach) for supporting oboe, strings and continuo, but distinctive in this […]

Bach Harpsichord Concertos 4 – Edinburgh International Festival – The Scotsman

Susan Nickalls, The Scotsman★★★★ The tonal blend of the two instruments was perfect with Schornsheim’s sharper articulation adding brightness in the quicker movements…Schornsheim gave a lively account of the mercurial prelude from the English Suite No 4 in F major followed by the Keyboard Concerto in F minor. This featured a bed of soft pizzicato […]

Bach Secular Cantatas – Edinburgh International Festival – The Scotsman

Ken Walton, The Scotsman ★★★★ The latter was the more persuasive, not just for its uncommonly extravagant orchestration – trumpets, horns and timps crowning the wind and strings with resplendent euphoria – but also the compositional grit that gives rugged theatrical edge to otherwise standard cantata numbers, and which the Dunedin singers engagingly characterised. Read […]

Matthew Passion – Boston Early Music Festival

J.S. Bach – Matthew PassionKristian Bezuidenhout, directorBoston Early Music Festival, 10 June 2019 Early Music America Review The two dozen virtuoso instrumentalists under Bezuidenhout’s continuo direction brought a transparency and dramatic flair to the orchestral music that was always in tune to the spirit of the text. In all, this performance of St. Matthew Passion was a […]

Matthew Passion — The Herald Review

Keith Bruce, The Herald ★★★★★ The clarity of the instrumental playing, from continuo in all its manifestations, through the melodic lines of pairs of flutes and oboes, to the entire ensemble and a beautiful solo turn from violinist Huw Daniel, was superb, and – some slightly wayward intonation in the reeds at the start of […]

Trevor Pinnock Interview

Meet renowned harpsichordist and conductor Trevor Pinnock, who directs Dunedin Consort for the first time next week in our performances of J.S. Bach’s Matthew Passion in Aberdeen and Edinburgh. Can you remember your first experience of the Matthew Passion? I well remember my introduction to parts of the Matthew Passion (in English!) as a choirboy at Canterbury Cathedral. I was especially taken by the […]

Apollo and Daphne — The Herald Review

★★★★Keith Bruce, The Herald8 February 2019 The composer’s plundering of Ovid and Petrach is a musical delight, and had the best balance of the musical forces we heard all night, with Katy Bircher’s flute joining the fine performance by oboist Alexandra Bellamy and eleven strings, led by Huw Daniel.  [T]he challenges of the chapel acoustic were overcome by […]

Apollo and Daphne — Seen and Heard Review

The Queen’s Hall, EdinburghSimon Thompson, 6 April 2019Seen and Heard International The fizz and crackle of the orchestral writing could only have come from a young genius on the make, and that jumped out of this Dunedin Consort performance, playfully directed from the harpsichord by an exuberant John Butt. The band of players was small […]

Bach Magnificat, Wigmore Hall — The Times Review

Paul Driver, The Times … a joyous New Year’s Eve of music by Bach from the Dunedin Consort, directed by John Butt. The original E flat version of the Magnificat in the second half was a captivating unfolding of short but vividly characterised choral or solo-voice movements, the Latin contrasting with the German of two […]

Beginning of the Revolution — Hunterian Museum, Glasgow — The Herald Review

★★★★Keith Bruce, The Herald Its [the music’s] intricacies were in good hands here, starting with the delicious interplay between the viols of Jonathan Manson and Alison McGillivray on a Jenkins’s Pavane and later including a virtuoso and melody-packed sonata by Benedetto Marcello played by Manson. Butt was in his solo element on Kuhnau’s David and […]

Bach Magnificat — Wigmore Hall, London — The Independent Review

★★★★★Michael Church, The Independent The Dunedin Consort, under John Butt’s historically-informed direction, gave a typically dazzling performance of Bach at his most ravishing. The second Orchestral Suite and the fourth Brandenberg Concerto, conveyed by just eight players, emerged with all the detail meticulously clear, while each of the eight voices in the motet “Singet dem Herrn ein neues Lied” contributed […]