With the last of our Concerts in the Parks last night, we have brought our 2012–13 New York season to a close, and the critics have looked back, not only on this year, but on the first four with Alan Gilbert as Music Director. On Tuesday The New York Times raved about his commitment to a vibrant range of activities, from the Parks Concerts and educational activities to new-music initiatives such as CONTACT! and next season’s inaugural NY PHIL BIENNIAL, and concluded, “he is building a legacy that matters and is helping to change the template for what an American orchestra can be.”
This, on the heels of New York Magazine’s June 30 assessment, titled “The Invisible Revolution,” which declared that “Alan Gilbert’s unflashy radicalism is re-creating the Philharmonic,” and noted highlights such as his “powerful case for wresting [Bach’s B-minor Mass] back from specialists and performing it with an anachronistic but rich and supple ensemble” and the “searing violence” of his interpretation of Dallapiccola’s Il prigioniero, in which “there was not a perfunctory second.” After musing on how the Music Director “travels through a musical landscape with a naturalist’s vigilance, alert to moments of drama even before they happen, knowing that a distant, barely audible murmur portends a calamitous event nearby,” the critic concluded, “It’s a good thing he’s game for adventures.”
We couldn’t agree more!