But that view is changing as well.
From symphony orchestras to chamber concerts, instrumentalists are asserting their physical, individual presences in ways that are by turns whimsical, heartbreaking or strange. Sometimes it’s a single player who momentarily breaks away from the ensemble: In Mark Morris’s production of Britten’s “Curlew River” at the Brooklyn Academy of Music, a solo flutist walked calmly in circles amid the singers onstage. At a performance of Dvorak by the Budapest Festival Orchestra at David Geffen Hall, a percussionist ambled to the front of the podium and from his tuxedo coat magically produced a tiny brass bell, which soon became the focal point of the music. The most moving scenes in Peter Sellars’s ritualized “St. Matthew Passion” at the Park Avenue Armory were those in which a vocal soloist and a single instrumentalist faced each other for the duration of an aria, locked in a dialectical act of worship. Full story.
Corinna da Fonseca-Wollheim (The New York Times) / July 28, 2017