Zachary Lewis
“(…) In four works conducted by Stephane Deneve, music director of the Brussels Philharmonic, the orchestra on its only subscription concert this month managed to conjure everything from tranquility and the meaning of life to ecstasy and religious awe. (…)

“Blue Cathedral,” a 1999 classic, was no less tantalizing. Playing the work for the first time, the orchestra with Deneve treated the composer’s reflection on her then-late brother to a shimmering, evocative performance, one marked by organic pacing and a raft of instrumental color. (…)

The object of “The Poem of Ecstasy” was something altogether different. Where Higdon and Debussy took inspiration from the outside, Scriabin looked inward, intensely, in an attempt to give voice to the soul’s yearning for transcendence. It’s not an easy piece to bring off, but Deneve and the orchestra did just that. Deneve again deferred to the music, allowing it to unfold naturally and continuously. Each twist, surge, and retreat flowed seamlessly into the next, and the crescendo at work’s end accrued cataclysmic power from a gradual rise. (…)”

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