Expectations run high for the inaugural concert of the Athens State Orchestra under the baton of its new conductor Stefanos Tsialis who stepped into the shoes of its former musical director Vassilis Christopoulos who left the post of the principal conductor of the Orchestra since the Minister of Culture did not renew his contract. It was therefore natural for the Greek audience to feel
rather apprehensive for the inaugural concert of the 3rd of October at the Athens Megaron. They needn’t have worried.. Every reservations one may had towards the young S.Tsialis were dispersed right from the first explosive measures of Dvorak’s “Carnival” Overture. It was evident right from the start that we were dealing with an experienced conductor who had absolute tonal and rhythmic control over the orchestra. Every move he made showed his deep understanding of the music and its rhythmic and melodic structure.
This was more evident in his rendition of Dvorak’s 8th Symphony which sounded fresh as never before.
The pianist Thodoris Tzovanakis played Chopin’s 1st Piano Concerto, but I felt that his mathematical exactness and his rather strict rendition of the concerto revealed that this music is not maybe his “fach”. I would like to hear him in a Prokofiev or a Bartok concerto, although in the second part he sounded more relaxed and allowed the melodic lines to breathe more freely.Thodoris Tzobanakis
I think that finally the Orchestra found the perfect person to lead them, since S.Tsialis has a very communicative personality that works well both with the musicians of the orchestra as well as for the audience that left the Concert Hall with happy faces, a rare occurrence these difficult and dark times..