Percy Leung:港樂新樂季精選一覽

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梵志登指揮的馬勒 $200 音樂會,絕對物超所值。 圖片來源:香港管弦樂團
(翻譯內容以英文版本為準)

自 2012 年梵志登接替艾度.迪華特擔任香港管弦樂團(下稱「港樂」)的音樂總監後,這支城中旗艦級管弦樂團的水準有著戲劇性的進步。現在樂團的演奏聽起來嚴絲合縫,無不流露著專注與風味,伴隨美妙精緻的旋律、樂句與和聲。極高質量、精確地奏出每個音符,交融的聲音不同凡響,所有樂手都專心一致地回應梵志登流暢而投入的指揮。港樂新樂季的陣容令人印象深刻,以下簡介幾個精選節目。

1. 馬勒 $200 音樂會 —— 第七交響曲(2018 年 11 月 16 及 17 日); 第九交響曲 (2019 年 4月 26 及 27 日)

我很高興看到港樂推出這個新計劃。古斯塔夫.馬勒交響曲的演奏會門票往往較昂貴,因表演這些樂曲需要大型的管弦樂團,有時亦需要獨唱歌手與大型合唱團配合演出,大大增加演出成本。以 200 港元體驗氣勢宏偉的馬勒交響曲,且由對其有豐富表演經驗的梵志登指揮,絕對物超所值。這兩首馬勒的作品被譽為極富哲理,引導觀眾思考人生、愛情、夢想、成敗的意義。

2. 祈辛的李斯特(2018 年 12 月 5 日)

祈辛不用多作介紹,他是目前為止浪漫時期鋼琴作品的最佳演繹者。他是完美的化身,所有的他演出都是技藝精湛、眼花繚亂、鼓舞人心、精彩異常、令人振奮且充滿激情。祈辛這位活生生的傳奇,我實在難以用筆墨來形容他的才華。他演奏李斯特的「第一鋼琴協奏曲」,保證是與眾不同及叫人嘆為觀止。

3. 奧斯卡配樂大師:亞歷山大.達士勒(2019 年 1 月 4 及 5 日)

要說亞歷山大.達士勒是全球首屈一指的電影配樂大師,也絕不偏頗:他曾二度奪得奧斯卡金像獎, 三奪英國影藝學院電影獎,兩獲金球獎、格萊美獎及三座凱薩獎。其電影配樂作品在全球廣受歡迎,港人對他參與作曲的電影也定必略有所聞,如「英女皇」、「奇幻逆緣」、「哈利波特 —— 死神的聖物 1 & 2」、「皇上無話兒」、「小學雞私奔記」、「布達佩斯大酒店」、「救參任務」、「解碼遊戲」及「忘形水」等。這次機會難逢,能欣賞到這位大作曲家親自指揮其情深、淒美的作品。記得要帶些紙巾!

4. 史拉健與伊頓公學聖詩合唱團(2019 年 4 月 5 及 6 日)

伊頓公學聖詩合唱團曾被「時代雜誌」形容為一個「令人驚豔的學校合唱團…… 表達出完美的平衡、機警且滿有智慧、音色尤佳、富熱誠與靈敏度」。與劍橋與牛津大學的聖詩合唱團一樣,伊頓公學聖詩合唱團同樣代表著英國悠久的合唱音樂傳統。你很少能看到這支合唱團,演唱由美國老前輩伯恩斯坦作曲的合唱團傑作「卓切斯特詩篇」。演奏會由國際知名古典音樂指揮史拉健指揮柴可夫斯基的「第五交響曲」。數年前,史拉健與底特律交響樂團及日本 NHK 交響樂團合作演出時,獲得如雷貫耳的掌聲及備受好評。相信在香港也能獲得同樣熱情的反應!

5. 古典樂棟篤笑之獨奏家打大交(2019 年 4 月 10、11 及 14 日)

在我眼中,意高文與朱亨基可謂今時今日最有趣的古典音樂笑匠。他們把古典音樂由一門嚴肅的藝術,轉化成大眾流行文化中的產物。他們在演奏廳中滑稽的一舉一動,肯定會讓小孩子不再覺得古典音樂沉悶和無聊。各位家長,若你們想啟發孩子在古典音樂方面的興趣,這場演奏會是個絕佳的起步點。

6. 芬蘭之旅(2019 年 6 月 28 及 29 日)

芬蘭指揮家范斯克對德奧音樂卡農曲的詮釋常引起爭議。我總是認為范斯克指揮日耳曼作品,就像要求莫札特指揮中樂一樣。約 6 年前,范斯克曾為港樂指揮馬勒的「第五交響曲」,當時整個表演令我感到驚訝 —— 沒有任何音樂性及抒情性可言,幾乎全曲都是高潮。然而,說到演繹斯堪的納維亞與北歐音樂,范斯克依然是首屈一指的指揮家。他尤其擅長演奏尙.西貝遼士與卡爾.尼爾森的樂曲。在這場演奏會中,范斯克將會指揮西貝遼士兩首著名作品 ——「芬蘭頌」以及「第二交響曲」,以及當代芬蘭作曲家連寶格的「單簧管協奏曲」。我曾聽過由范斯克指揮、明尼蘇達交響樂團演奏的「第二交響曲」,被這個龐大的管弦作品中深深感動。大家不要錯過!


$200 to experience a gigantic Mahler symphony conducted by the experienced Mahler interpreter Jaap van Zweden is definitely a bargain. (HK Phil)

Highlights of the Hong Kong Philharmonic Orchestra’s New Season

Ever since Jaap van Zweden replaced Edo de Waart as Music Director of the Hong Kong Philharmonic Orchestra (HK Phil) in 2012, our city’s flagship orchestra’s standard has improved dramatically. The orchestra now sounds incredibly tight in ensemble, intention and colour, with magical delicacy of tone, phrasing and harmonic support. Every note is played with a radiant vocal quality and pinpoint precision. The blend of sound is impressive, and all the players are willing to respond as one to van Zweden’s fluid and engaging direction. The HK Phil has an impressive line-up in the coming season, and here are the particular highlights:

1. Mahler $200 – Symphony No.7 (16 & 17 November 2018); Symphony No.9 (26 & 27 April 2019)

I was delighted with this new project of the HK Phil. Tickets for concerts featuring Gustav Mahler’s symphonies are often rather expensive, as these pieces require a large orchestra and occasionally also solo singers and large choirs, thus significantly increasing the performance costs. $200 to experience a gigantic Mahler symphony conducted by the experienced Mahler interpreter Jaap van Zweden is definitely a bargain. Both of these symphonies by Mahler are highly philosophical works that encourage audiences to contemplate the meanings of life, of love, of dreams, of successes and of failures.

2. Kissin Plays Liszt (5 December 2018)

Evgeny Kissin requires no introduction. The finest interpreter of the Romantic era’s piano pieces. Period. He is the embodiment of perfection; all his performances are virtuoso, dazzling, inspiring, astonishing, exhilarating and electrifying; I am often out of words when describing the talent of this living legend. This performance of Liszt’s First Piano Concerto promises to be something special and breathtaking.

3. The Oscar Maestro: Alexandre Desplat (4 & 5 January 2019)
Alexandre Desplat (HK Phil)

It is fair to say that Alexandre Desplat is one of the world’s finest composers of film music, having won two Academy Awards, three BAFTAs, two Golden Globes, two Grammys and three Césars. His film tunes are adored by people across the world, and Hong Kongers definitely would have seen some, if not all, of the films which he has composed for, including The Queen, The Curious Case of Benjamin Button, Harry Potter and the Deathly Hallows – Part 1 & Part 2, The King’s Speech, Moonrise Kingdom, The Grand Budapest HotelArgo, The Imitation Game and The Shape of Water. This is a very rare opportunity to see the master composer in action conducting his affectionate and poignant film scores himself. Remember to bring tissues!

4. Leonard Slatkin and the Eton College Chapel Choir (5 & 6 April 2019)

The Eton College Chapel Choir was once described by The Times as a ‘staggeringly good school choir: […] beautifully balanced, alert, intelligent, well-tuned, passionate and sensitive’. Along with the college chapel choirs at Cambridge and Oxford, the Eton College Chapel Choir represents the long-standing choral music tradition in the United Kingdom. It is not often you get to hear this chapel choir performing Chichester Psalms, a choral masterwork composed by the American doyen Leonard Bernstein. This concert also features Leonard Slatkin, one of the most respected conductors in the classical music industry, conducting Tchaikovsky’s Fifth Symphony. His interpretation of this Russian masterpiece garnered thunderous applause and acclaimed reviews when he performed it with both the Detroit Symphony Orchestra and NHK Symphony Orchestra some years ago. Hopefully the response would be equally enthusiastic in Hong Kong!

5. Igudesman & Joo: Clash of the Soloists (10, 11 & 14 April 2019)

Igudesman & Joo are, in my opinion, the funniest classical music comedians of the modern day. They have transformed classical music from a serious art form to an offering located within popular mass culture. Their hilarious acts in concert halls have ensured that children no longer find classical music as boring and uninteresting. Parents, if you would like to ignite your children’s interest in classical music, this concert is the perfect starting point.

6. Finnish Adventure (28 & 29 June 2019)

Finnish conductor Osmo Vänskä’s interpretations of the Austro-German musical canon are often divisive. I always think that having Vänskä conduct Germanic works is akin to asking Mozart conduct Chinese music. When Vänskä conducted the HK Phil in a performance of Mahler’s Fifth Symphony some six years ago, that performance left me in shock. There was no musicality and lyricism whatsoever; everything was a climax. However, Vänskä remains the world’s foremost conductor when it comes to interpreting Scandinavian and Nordic music. He is a grandmaster in conducting music by fellow Finn Jean Sibelius and the Dane Carl Nielsen. In this concert, Vänskä will conduct two of Sibelius’s most famous works – the majestic Finlandia and grandiose Second Symphony – as well as the compelling clarinet concerto by contemporary Finnish composer Magnus Lindberg. I once heard Vänskä’s performance of Sibelius’s Second Symphony with the Minnesota Orchestra, and I emerged from this gigantic orchestral work emotionally engaged and sentimentally moved. Don’t miss this!

※ 此欄文章為作者觀點,不代表本網立場。 ※

Percy Leung is a British historian and conductor. A graduate of Cambridge and Durham Universities, he is now studying for a PhD at the University of St Andrews. Percy is particularly fond of Manchester United, the Conservative Party and Fish & Chips.