Zum Liederabend am 28. August 1974 in Edinburgh


The Scotsman, Edinburgh29. August 1974

Barenboim catches magic of Elgar

London Philharmonic: Usher Hall

Originally, last nightís concert at the Usher Hall was to have been an all-Elgar programme, very interestingly compiled, with Dietrich Fischer-Dieskau singing the "Sea Pictures," and Daniel Barenboim conducting "Falstaff" and a batch of "Pomp and Circumstance" marches. But in the end Fischer-Dieskau postponed adding the songs to his repertory and Barenboim dropped the idea of the marches, which left us with "Falstaff," joined now by the "Enigma Variations" and Mahlerís "Songs of a Wayfarer."

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There was likewise much to savour in Fischer-Dieskauís account of the Mahler, a work he must have sung a thousand times but which he still performs with a rueful beauty which is intensely moving. Last night one admired anew his command of inflection, the quick veiling or projecting of tone to make an emotional point, the honeyed phrasing with its underlay of bitterness.

Conrad Wilson

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