Classical music review

Ax, Tilson Thomas and New World deliver strong night of German music at Arsht Center

Pianist Emanuel Ax
Pianist Emanuel Ax

South Florida Classical Review

For its first appearance of the season at the Adrienne Arsht Center in downtown Miami, the New World Symphony chose a program that was traditional, Germanic and anchored by a star soloist.

The soloist Saturday was Emanuel Ax, who gave a strong performance of Beethoven’s Piano Concerto No. 4 that had a firm sense of early 19th-century proportion and ease.

There are some concertos in which you want to feel the performer’s effort, in which the heroic conquering of technical obstacles forms part of the musical drama.

Beethoven’s Fourth isn’t one of them. Positioned between the thunder and fire of the composer’s Third and Fifth piano concertos, the Fourth is Beethoven’s most serene work in the form, and Ax’s fluent virtuosity captured its unique tone.

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