Conductor Vincenzo Milletarì receives high praise following his debut with the Nuremberg Symphony Orchestra on 7 May at Meistersingerhalle, Nuremberg. The programme featured Martucci’s Piano Concerto No. 1 in D minor, Op. 40 with pianist Federico Nicoletta, and Berlioz’s Fantastique Symphony op. 14.

Stephan Schwarz-Peters from Nürnberger Nachrichten writes, “The sound of the symphony is drier overall, but this makes it transparent and the colors are so well mixed that Berlioz’s sophisticated instrumentation comes into its own even better than with the Philharmoniker. Vincenzo Milletarì drives the orchestra into extreme spheres of expression right from the start, sets sharp accents, heats through the piece with amazing rubati – and yet does everything exactly as Berlioz stipulates in his score…Unlike in most performances, Milletarì favors smoothing, sharply distinguishing between a mezzoforte, a forte and a fortissimo: even the quadruple piano of the famous horn glissando in the final movement is still audibly graded from that of the triplet intoned just before. phenomenal!…Each crescendo is taken literally – revealing how cleverly the composer calculated the effect of his piece even down to the smallest detail. The same applies to the sound effect of the individual instruments, whose solo implementation – harp in the second movement, oboe and cor anglais in the third movement, E-flat clarinet in the fifth movement – lays in the most virtuoso hands for both orchestras. But here, too, the Italian conductor sharpens more precisely, showing even greater courage to be drastic…If, for example, at the end the assembled brass starts to corrupt Dies irae, you really think the devil is bloating his cheeks.”

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Photo credit: Marco Borrelli

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