Considering that I am obsessed with all things YouTube and all things orchestral music, I’ve had a surprisingly hard time getting into the whole YouTube Symphony affair.
The critics have started to weigh in. Anthony Tommasini reviews the ensemble’s performance last night, with a dose of (expected?) cynicism. Martin Steinberg, reporting for AP, calls the project “part publicity stunt by its producers, part vanity trip by its participants, part opportunity to attract a younger crowd to classical music.” Claire Prentice notes that “the atmosphere reached fever pitch as [the audience] jumped to their feet and begged for more. Some wept. Even the cynics seemed won over by an event which combined technical wizardry, human ideals and ambition.” Michael Tilson Thomas, who directed the group, likens the whole event to “a summit conference and a scout jamboree, with elements of speed dating.”