Beethoven Concerto with Manfred Honeck and the Pittsburgh Symphony Orchestra
Concertmaster Noah Bendix-Balgley gave a transporting performance.
His playing was beautifully articulate and sang with natural soulfulness. It was pure Beethoven, not someone’s twisting of Beethoven’s music to “make it their own.”
So sensitive and alert were the orchestra’s contributions under Honeck’s leadership that the performance felt like chamber music. But however soft the volume coming from the stage, the playing was always alive with shape and emphasis.
The slow movement sang with deep inner feelings expressed lightly, without heavy romantic weight. The finale was physically vigorous but also agile.
Bendix-Balgley composed his own cadenzas for each of the three movements. They were all fascinating explorations which found fresh changes of harmony, voicing and thematic sequence.
Mark Kanny, Pittsburgh Tribune-Review
Saturday, October 13th, 2012