Concert video of the week: Mahler’s 2nd from Mexico

Concert video of the week: Mahler’s 2nd from Mexico


norman lebrecht

September 19, 2015

Concert of the week from Mexico City, the London Philharmonic Orchestra conducted by Alondra de la Parra.


Alondra de la Parra: Mahler’s Symphony No. 2 on

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  • Stephen Maddock says:

    Plus 24 members of the CBSO Chorus joining with the Mexican chorus, all under Simon Halsey’s direction.

  • Jonathan M. Dunsby says:

    Some quite critical comments on this conductor on an old SD thread

  • Leo says:

    I think it would be great to be conducted by Alondra. She has a very clear beat not like some conductors I observe and her Mahler last night had some great subtle nuances which made it quite different to versions I’ve heard in the past.

    • May says:

      I’m sure any number of musicians would be happy to vacate their chair so you could have that experience.

    • Michael Schaffer says:

      I have only watched a few minutes, but it becomes apparent pretty quickly that she seems to conduct along with the orchestra rather than lead it in a number of places, especially when it comes to applying tempo shifts (e.g. at 3:10 into the first movement).

      • Ellingtonia says:

        You watched for a couple of minutes and then deem yourself qualified to comment on the whole of the performance……….I see your arrogance has not abated in any way and your propensity to lecture us readers is undiminished.
        By the way, how many leading orchestras have you conducted in performances of Mahler 2?

        • Michael Schaffer says:

          Your “response” here is completely nonsensical as I did not “judge” the performance “as a whole” at all. And I made it very clear that I had only watched a few minutes and that I was just commenting on these very basic technical aspects.

          • Ellingtonia says:

            So if you weren’t “judging” the conductors performance what were you doing?…….. making a crass pronouncement!

          • Michael Schaffer says:

            No, “Ellingtonia”, I didn’t make a “crass pronouncement” either. I just made a comment on some basic aspects of how this conductor interacts with this orchestra. No more, no less.

            It’s funny that you say that I judged the whole performance from watching just a little bit of it, even though it was very clear from my initial comment that I wasn’t doing that at all, yet it is you who keeps reading way too much into my brief comment and grossly exaggerating what I actually said.

  • Doug says:

    “This video not available at the moment. Please come back later.”

    Looks like her video went on leave too.

  • Itsjtime says:

    Translation: incompetent!!!!

  • Heywood Jalisten says:

    The cleavage is tantalizing -does it increase with the number of the symphony? – but the video is “no longer available”

  • Urania says:

    After the invasion of young conductors we might go now into a wave of women conductors. Always something new for the headlines. Absurd!

    • AnnaT says:

      Women conductors “invading!” Let us clutch our collective pearls. Terrible, everyone knows you need a particular type of genitalia to do this job…

      • Michael Schaffer says:

        No, not at all, Annat. This lady here for instance is a very good conductor who has made a number of very impressive recordings, including of this specific one:

        • AnnaT says:

          Hi Michael, I intended sarcasm, in response to the comment above mine that suggested female conductors were just headline-grabbers.

          • Michael Schaffer says:

            The intended sarcasm was well understood, Anna, and you were probably justified in using it here – except the “problem” here is that it wasn’t quite clear how “Urania” really meant his/her comment, but your response was based on the assumption that he/she meant that women in general can not be good conductors.
            But it is also possible that what Urania really meant was that some female conductors may be “hyped” primarily because they are women and women conductors still are, strangely enough, something of a “novelty”.
            So while it is sad that it still is a hurdle for a talented conductor if she is a woman even today (in 2015!), we shouldn’t overreact and write off any criticism of a female conductor as “misogyny”.
            That doesn’t help further equality in this field either. It must still be possible to criticize a conductor “even” if the conductor is a lady. This particular lady is already quite well known, and it is also well known that she is not really a good conductor, but she has a lot of money and political connections to further her career – and that’s great for her – and she and her supporters also like to play the “oh you don’t think she is good because she is a woman?” card.
            And that doesn’t help further equality for women conductors *either*.

  • Mark Henriksen says:

    I watched it from beginning to end. There are a number of spots where the musicians look up before an entrance or during a solo. She is obviously leading the orchestra and its a reasonable interpretation of this piece. I’m not sure where the negativity comes from. What do the players in the orchestra think of her?

  • David says:

    I think this woman should not conduct in general!
    Looks like a joke to me!