Triple Concerto in C Major, Op. 56
Fantasia for Piano, Chorus and Orchestra in C Minor, Op. 80
Fantasia for Piano, Chorus and Orchestra in C Minor, Op. 80: I. Adagio (Live at Philharmonie Berlin / 1995)
The two performances here were filmed in the Philharmonie, home to the Berlin Philharmonic, in 1995. Both of them directed from the piano by Daniel Barenboim, they are still wonderfully fresh. Beethoven’s Triple Concerto is thrillingly alive as the three top musicians (the conductor and pianist is joined by Itzhak Perlman, Yo-Yo Ma, and the Philharmoniker) challenge each other, respond, and play with great personality. Meanwhile, the orchestra—its wind players in particular—react with just as much invention and wit. Choral Fantasy has a real sense of improvisation as Barenboim gauges everything with a sure touch, its originality apparent at every moment. The Deutsche Oper Berlin, at the album’s close, are also in fine form.