BSO mixes Saint-Saens with rap, showcases percussive Glass concerto
Since Alsop arrived at the BSO, pathbreaking composer and Baltimore native Philip Glass finally started to get the kind of attention he deserves in his hometown. The conductor brought his “Concerto Fantasy for Two Timpanists” into the orchestra’s repertoire on this occasion, a most welcome addition.
Alsop kept the orchestra in a taut groove throughout, ensuring a galvanizing impact in the whirlwind finale, where Glass tosses in almost giddy, Gershwin-esque woodwind flourishes amid the orchestral pulsations and the driving impact of the timpani. The concerto is instantly, constantly engaging; so was this performance.