Badisches Tagblatt, 18 November 2002
The Baden-Baden Philharmonic showed a wonderful rapport with guest conductor Lisa Xanthopoulou and soloist Tomo Keller
The light hand of complete command even in the inferno
The third symphony concert of the Baden-Baden Philharmonic, sponsored by the Conductors Forum of the Deutscher Musikrat (German Music Council), gave two young, talented musicians the opportunity of distinguishing themselves before a large audience. Conducting the concert was the Greek conductor Lisa Xanthopoulou, a musician who has been accepted by the German Music Council into the "Maestros von Morgen" (Maestros of Tomorrow) list of artists....... The concert opened with five Greek Dances for String Orchestra by Nikos Skalkottas. Anyone expecting only twelve-tone music from this composer and pupil of Arnold Schönberg experienced a surprise: folk dances, full of contrast, presented in harmonic colours of the greatest subtlety and variety - and who could do justice to the dances more than the Greek conductor Lisa Xanthopoulou? With her controlled body language, she seemed to join in the dance herself, conjuring a minstrel-like presentation from the Philharmonic.....The main work of the concert was the formidable Concerto for Violin and Orchestra in A Minor op. 53 by Antonin Dvorak.....the Rondo Finale then provided another opportunity for temperament and "Bohemian" verve. But even when things took off, as here, the conductor did not desert her very frugal but focussed conducting method.....
The finale of the BBPh concert conducted by the guest Xanthopoulou was the Symphony no. 5, D Minor, the "Reformation Symphony" by Felix Mendelssohn Bartholdy. .....
Lisa Xanthopoulou: Like a Rock in the Surge
....A bombastic symphony, slightly old-fashioned in effect, whose characteristic motifs were well delineated by the conductor. In the most stirring moments she was like a rock in the surge in front of the orchestra, mastering the inferno with small, exact movements and an eloquent left hand...... And who had earned the rousing applause and bravos of the large public by the end: composer, conductor, orchestra? Probably it was meant for all three, as thanks for a rounded, commanding, indeed enthralling presentation.
By BT critic KAREN STREICH