Stories » Maxim Vengerov leads MSO as soloist and conductor in opening gala / The Age

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Maxim Vengerov leads MSO as soloist and conductor in opening gala / The Age

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A bit late in the day for a season opening; by my count, the Melbourne Symphony Orchestra had played about eight events before Tuesday night's gala with Maxim Vengerov​. Still, this occasion brought the players to a fine performance pitch and patrons got double service because the Russian master-violinist took on two roles: as soloist in the Tchaikovsky D Major Concerto, and as conductor of Rimsky-Korsakov's orchestration marvel Scheherazade which set the benchmark for Oriental program music.

For once, with the concerto you felt that everything had been worked out beforehand. Under Benjamin Northey​, the MSO outlined the backdrop to Vengerov's splendidly etched line with confidence and a reassuring unanimity of approach, showing enough unexpected individual touches to refresh this familiar repertoire staple.   

READ THE FULL Age REVIEW