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2019.05.19 Concert – Die Winterreise, Cleveland

Severance Hall, Cleveland

Reinberger Chamber Hall

Die Winterreise

19 May 2019, 7.30pm

Simon Keenlyside, baritone

Natalia Katyukova, piano


Photo Gallery

Sound bites

cleveland.com, 20.05.19, Zachary Lewis, The Plain Dealer

“…..A word for what transpired Sunday night at Severance Hall doesn’t exist.

“Recital” doesn’t cut it. Neither does “concert.” That’s because baritone Simon Keenlyside didn’t just perform Schubert’s “Winterreise.” He inhabited it.

Wielding a voice of seemingly infinite color and the talents of a seasoned actor, the British singer held Reinberger Chamber Hall in the palm of his hand for 75 whole minutes with the tale of a dejected lover on the brink of self-destruction……”

seenandheardinternational, 23.05.19, Mark Sebastian Jordan

“…Sunday provided a rare and wonderful concert……with Simon Keenlyside presenting Schubert’s Die Winterreise in advance of his performances of Sibelius songs with the orchestra the following weekend.

Keenlyside was in excellent voice, running the range from coldly quiet to loudly storming. He pushed his voice hard enough to portray the narrator’s anguish, yet never quite past control. It was moving, though, because it always seemed like he risked being out of control—and that he had to. When Keenlyside reached ‘Das Wirtshaus’ (‘The Tavern’), the devastation was so complete, the listener could feel without question that the song about the traveler continued on, but the narrator had clearly entered a state of mind from which he would never return — devastatingly prophetic for both Wilhelm Müller and Franz Schubert, both of whom died young. The final ‘Der Leiermann’ (‘The Hurdy-Gurdy Man’) rightly teetered on the brink, leaving a frightening silence at the end….”

clevelandclassical.com, 29.05.19, Daniel Hathaway

“…There are various ways to put Winterreise onstage, ranging from relatively straightforward interpretations to near-psychopathic actings-out. Keenlyside gave us something in between. Taking off his wristwatch — some sort of performance ritual? — he paced and fretted, wrung his hands, mopped his brow, and held the audience in thrall for just over an hour as he virtually trekked through ice and snow, becoming increasingly isolated from the rest of humanity.

Simon Keenlyside alternated robust vocal physicality with anguished yearning throughout the cycle, perfectly matched by Katyukova’s stylish playing of Schubert’s imaginative piano parts….”

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