A “richer, lusher, livelier” premiere of Karawane at LA Phil

Lionel Bringuier’s return to the Los Angeles Philharmonic this weekend earned the conductor acclaim for a program highlighted by the West Coast premiere of Karawane. The piece was commissioned by Lionel for his opening concert as Chief Conductor and Music Director of the Tonhalle Orchestra Zurich and written by former LA Phil Music Director Esa-Pekka Salonen (under whom Lionel served as assistant conductor in Los Angeles), and its first California outing was celebrated by the Los Angeles Times as a “sensational” homecoming.

“Exciting as the Zurich premiere was, Bringuier now makes ‘Karawane’ richer, lusher, livelier and all the more unhesitatingly in-your-face,” wrote Mark Swed. “It really does make a difference when new music is treated as a family affair.”

The Times also reserved praise for Lionel’s “succulently rich performance of Debussy’s ‘Prelude to the Afternoon of a Faun,’” which set Karawane’s “moody impressionist landscape.”

For more on the LA Phil program, click here to read a recent interview between Lionel and Los Angeles blog All is Yar.

Further up the California coast, Lionel and Yuja Wang — his soloist this weekend in Los Angeles — have earned further acclaim for their recording of Ravel’s two piano concerti for Deutsche Grammophon: “Both of these performances, with lustrous orchestral support from conductor Lionel Bringuier and the Zurich Tonhalle Orchestra, burst vividly to life,” wrote the San Francisco Chronicle. “It’s magical.”

(Photo: Daniel Hartwig)