"...He has also chosen to return to instruments suitable to the time the opera was written. Granted, this approach has long been so common for baroque music that it’s now almost standard. For the classical period, however, the choice is far less automatic. Brilliant ensembles such as Britain’s authentic performance pioneers Orchestra of the Age of Enlightenment have been changing this, encouraging others to cast off performance style derived from the later Romantic period. Currentzis’s choice of instruments still comes as a de-familiarising surprise. A lute and a hurdy-gurdy both turn up, while the string section sounds slightly thinner and more percussive, giving the piece a chamber-music feel that’s intimate and gutsy. More strikingly still, there is piano accompaniment throughout. For listeners used to a lusher sound, this might give the recording a whiff of the rehearsal room. For me, it makes the production sound more direct, less concerned with displaying virtuosity than keeping the action dynamic and alive..."
Conductor Teodor Currentziz: punk rock attitude in the classical music world? | The National
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