Jacek Kaspszyk lets loose the considerable forces of the Warsaw Philharmonic on three of Karol Szymanowski’s vocal works. The Stabat Mater, fragrant with incense, finely balances liturgical stateliness with a cathartic emotional tug (Szymanowski was mourning his young niece). Inflections of Polish folk music, glancing memories of north African travels – all are vividly conjured up by Kaspszyk and his players.
- The Guardian
[…]The two big works on the Warsaw Philharmonic’s album [Stabat Mater and Symphony No. 3], lovingly shaped by the veteran Polish conductor Jacek Kaspszyk, show very different sides of Szymanowski’s creativity.
- The Times
Conductor Jacek Kaspszyk managed to release energies out of Sinfonia Lahti, that you do not often hear. […] He created an atmosphere, which results from great musicality and understanding [and] enhanced the rich and colourful chord structure in a very spontaneous and natural way, whilst also maintaining a balanced sound in the climaxes.
- Etelä-Suomen Sanomat
There was no denying the vibrancy and flair of the orchestra’s playing under Music Director Jacek Kaspszyk […] After intermission, Kaspszyk led a performance of Brahms’ First Symphony that was at once robust and refined. It boasted plenty of rhythmic momentum in the opening movement (where Kaspszyk won my heart by taking the repeat, always the sign of a conductor who knows his trade), as well as gracefully translucent textures in the slow movement. The encore was a brisk and vividly coloured account of Leonard Bernstein’s “Candide” Overture — a surprising and frankly flattering tribute from a touring orchestra to its host country. It was a delightful close to an all-around rewarding evening.
- San Francisco Chronicle
Under the baton of long-time music director Jacek Kaspszyk, the musicians proved themselves as dynamically sensitive as Cho in the Chopin concerto, and they got unexpected vibrancy out of the work’s humdrum orchestration […] Kaspszyk’s beat is large and demonstrative, yet he got precise responses from his group.
- The Orange County Register
Though the Weinberg revival began in the 1960s, Kaspszyk can be credited with doing his part: in 2013, one of his first acts as the Philharmonic’s new music director was to record Weinberg’s Symphony No. 4, which he and the musicians turned into this evening’s exuberant conclusion. What was evident from the beginning, …was the finesse of the orchestra’s strings, and the ability of the group to shrink its utterances to a whisper. With most of the sold-out audience on its feet, Kaspszyk returned for a swaggering encore: the insouciant, extravagantly orchestrated Mazurka from Weinberg’s Polish Melodies, which made the most of the orchestra’s gritty power.
- New York Classical Review
Schubert's Third Symphony was pure magic in Kaspszyk's hands…it never lost sight for one moment of the quintessential melodiousness that is the composer's hallmark. But to the Poles' light-footed and well-sprung presentation, Kaspszyk added another ingredient: Beethovenian weight, and not just with the six double basses or in the hefty slow introduction. It gave the symphony an unusual solidity, firming up the delight. Their Beethoven Nine was extraordinarily fresh…Kaspszyk's pacey tempos were thrilling and exhilarating: the development section in the first movement seethed and went like the wind; in the pounding Scherzo I almost ducked as the rhythms flew off the page like bullets. The slow movement sang as it always does, with not one ounce of drag; and the fantastic, searing performance of the finale…felt like being there as the music was born. I found the whole thing totally cathartic.
- The Herald Scotland
Sunday night was full of wonderful surprises. Not only thanks to Krystian Zimmerman, but also to the National Philharmonic Orchestra under the baton of Jacek Kaspszyk (the new MD of the Warsaw Philharmonic Orchestra) a partnership already showing a pleasing change... Then to the Lutoslawski Symphony where the conductor led the Orchestra in a performance of precise proportions, colours and symphonic flourish.
- www.rp.pl - Warsaw Autumn Festival
Schubert’s Symphony 9 unfolded with melancholy magnificence and a responsive orchestra allowed Kaspszyk to stamp real character on the third movement’s dances. This programme would have been incomplete without something Polish and it was good to hear Kaspszyk recently announced as the Warsaw Philharmonic’s next chief conductor Szymanowski’s Concert Overture. It’s easy to overlook this work’s contrapuntal mastery in favour of its rich textures but the conductor and orchestra gave us both.
- The Sunday Telegraph
(‘Bernstein’s Candide Overture) _ ‘A real tour-de-force, energy pours from the stage, setting an extremely high precedent for the night to come. …The Szymanowski Concert Overture maintains energy levels but with an entirely different atmosphere…. Kaspszyk shows his experience maintaining complete control through effortless minimal movements, small gestures and expressions showing the mood of the piece. The orchestra responds to this with alacrity, displaying trust in his interpretation and style. The result: a passionate and evocative performance full of colour and character.... Impressively, Kaspszyk conducts scoreless, adding to the intensity of the performance and making for a natural musical experience.
Jacek Kaspszyk led the whole ensemble in a masterly fashion, intelligently placing the many climaxes emotions and passions of the work.
- Gazeta Wyborcza
(Szymanowski 'King Roger', Polish National Opera)
An excellent orchestra and a well considered programme make for a treat Jacek Kaspszyk obviously has great affection for both scores and presents all this music with elan.
- Gramophone Magazine
(Richard Strauss Le Bourgeois Gentilhomme and Stravinsky Pulcinella / Wroclaw Philharmonic Orchestra)
An important and magnificent release that gives is the best sound the composer has ever had... Conductor Kaspszyk and orchestra have as much tradition and experience with the work as anyone in the world.
- Audiophile Audition
(CD Lutoslawski: Symphony No 2 and Symphony No 4)