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Joshua Bell leads ASMF in dynamic performances at Harris Theater / Chicago Classical Review

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The Academy of St. Martin in the Fields (ASMF) performed at Harris Theater Saturday night under their music director, violinist Joshua Bell. While the evening's repertoire was routine, the performances were anything but, featuring inspired artistry and superlative playing from Bell and the storied ensemble.

As an accompanying ensemble, ASMF handles like a Maserati. One of many examples of this occurred in the concerto's first movement passages where the orchestra has isolated offbeats under rapid runs in the violin. In conducted performances these spots can find the orchestra tensely at the ready waiting for cues from the podium, while ASMF simply placed the punctuations where they belonged with little apparent effort, aurally following their director's lead.

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