The Los Angeles Philharmonic Chamber Music Society offered an exciting program Monday evening at Gindi Auditorium featuring music director Andre Previn, not on the podium but at the piano.
By far, the most polished performance was of Copland’s Suite from “Appalachian Spring,” heard in its original scoring for 13 players. Under Heiichiro Ohyama’s sensitive direction, the piece never lost its majesty and bright sonorities. He conducted with strength, conscious of the strong rhythms, and captured the freshness, exuberance and the simple quality of the piece. The ensemble, with Previn at the keyboard, responded with decisiveness and subtlety.
Before intermission, Daniel Rothmuller was accompanied by Previn in the Sonata for Cello and Piano, Opus 119, by Prokofiev. The lyrical first movement displayed the cellist’s expressiveness, but Rothmuller let the virtuosic passages of the second and third movements get the better of him. Previn’s playing was more than supportive, and endearing at times.
The evening began with Mendelssohn’s Trio in D minor. Violinist Franklyn D’Antonio and cellist Gloria Lum combined with Previn to exhibit their technical prowess, but somehow the fleetness of the playing did not hide the absence of excitement and intensity.