Hear him conduct Nielsen - and find out from Gabriela Montero what he's like to work with
The new issue of Gramophone features the phenomenally-talented conductor Gustavo Dudamel on our cover, while in a major interview inside he talks about the music of Nielsen, Bruckner and Sibelius, and reflects on his career so far. Find out what the man behind the hype really thinks about music in Gramophone's August issue (available to buy as a digital magazine now, and available in newsagents from Monday).
Listen to Gustavo Dudamel conduct the Finale of Nielsen's 4th Symphony - exclusively on the Gramophone Player!
Hear an advance track from the forthcoming DG recording with the Gothenburg Symphony Orchestra – released on August 22, the three disc set will contain Nielsen's Symphonies Nos 4 and 5, Bruckner's Symphony No 9 and Sibelius's Symphony No 2. To launch the Player simply click the button on the right-hand side of this screen (you need to be registered and logged in) – or to find out more about how it works, click here. You can find the track in the August Playlist.
Also for the August issue of Gramophone we asked pianist Gabriela Montero, one of Dudamel's regular collaborators, to reflect on working with the young maestro.
I have played more than 10 different concertos with Gustavo and we share a wonderful rapport. As a friend and colleague he is so flexible and a great listener. He is eager to create a vision of the work together but also aware of the need to support the soloist’s ideas. We have performed everything from Beethoven to Rachmaninov to Prokofiev, and I have always felt that I had the freedom to be spontaneous onstage and that he would provide a solid safety net. He is an incredible accompanist with a wonderful ear and sense of intuition.
In rehearsal Gustavo is very intent on capturing the character of a piece. He likes to bring out the personalities of the different instruments and to emphasise the contrasting sounds. He demonstrates his ideas very physically and metaphorically, too. He is detailed but not neurotic about that detail, so he always conveys the bigger picture. He has so much energy and a very Venezuelan sensibility on and off the stage. We did all the Beethoven concertos in Caracas a few years ago and after each concert we went out with the orchestra and danced salsa.
If you look at Gustavo’s iPod it contains everything from the Cuban singer Compay Segundo to salsa to merengue and then Mahler, Brahms and Wagner. He is a very eclectic guy and his exuberance onstage is part of his hunger and joy for life.
I think Gustavo has not only brought his brilliance and talent to the classical world but also a different energy. In Venezuela classical music is new and exciting. If you go to a performance of Beethoven’s Fifth, it looks like a rock concert. So what he brings to the podium is a purity and simplicity in his relationship to the music. If you look at the orchestra they are positively in love!