Cincinnati gets all in a huff about the sweaty, drunken genius of Maestro Valery Gergiev: with his Petrouchka and Tchaikovsky's Fifth, like Godzilla, the great Russian conductor terrorizes Ohioans, and dances happily on the smodelring ruins of their concert hall.
May gawd keep him safe and sound for many, many years to come -- he is out favorite manga-like monster plushy toy.
As Opera Chic's bff4e&e reader Donna Anna wrote us, and you cannot describe the Gergiev magik any better than that:
The first half was Petrouchka, the 1911 version. All those wonderful passages shimmered, and he shaped it beautifully. I've seen this performed with Nureyev but one almost doesn't need a ballet because the story plays-out in the score. His ability to shape dynamics is without peer. At the end, the strings were barely audible but the sadness was all there.
Tchaikovsky's 5th was just...amazing. Talk about shaping and structuring! During the second movement, I had the sense that the orchestra was like a pair of lungs breathing in and out, crescendo to diminuendo in gorgeous hair-pin sequences. All the textures and sonic lushness played out and the orchestra sounded top of the line.
He's fascinating to watch. Very spare; and not a lot of jumping around until the end. All the drama and movement are in his hands which are like rubber. And he did keep flicking his hair back.
The audience went wild. Four calls, the orchestra wouldn't rise for the final call and all the Russians in the audience were hollering full steam. Lots of bouquets, and all well deserved.
Lucky Donna Anna! Let's just hope Gergiev had a designated driver somewhere!!!111 //i keed, i keed.