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Christian Zacharias – electrified and electrifying

Romanian Athenaeum
09/16/2005 -  and 09/17/2005
Beethoven : "Coriolan" Overture op. 62
Beethoven : The Five Piano Concertos

Lausanne Chamber Orchestra, Christian Zacharias (piano and conductor)

The way Christian Zacharias makes music is sort of magic. Electrified and electrifying, the conductor-pianist is entirely possessed by the force of the beethovenian message which reverberated in a captivating, urgent, dynamic way. The communication is total, the extremely high voltage fills the auditorium, grace to a trepidant, nervous lecture. Approximating very closely the behaviour of the modern human being. Such was the impression extracted from the bars of the “Coriolan” Overture, the first title from the second concert night. Then, there were the two Concertos no. 1 in C major op. 15 and no. 5 in E flat major op. 73 “Emperor”, which Zacharias knew precisely how to sequence and build gradually, outlining the stylistic differences between two works separated by no less than 58 opus numbers. The artist is mastering to perfection, starting with the Mozart and Haydn influences from op. 15 (how deep was the understanding of this composition, where the Largo in the second movement is played in terms of poetry!) and finishing with the mature interpretation of op. 73, where the monumentality of the first part (Allegro) is impetuously transmitted, the mid section (Adagio un poco mosso) has a noble charm and the Allegro final becomes exuberant and jubilating.

The Beethoven programs were attended by a huge audience overcrowding the Romanian Athenaeum. (Quite possibly the only ones upset were… the fire fighters). People between the rows, standing or sitting on the floor, on the stairs or under the stairs, the latter having to contend only to hear the sounds in the magnificent acoustics of the famous Bucharest Concert Hall since their location forbade sighting. Wonderful atmosphere!

Costin Popa



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