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May 10, 2011 by · Leave a Comment 

Watching classical music projected on a 3D movie screen may be more enjoyable than watching it being performed live, British music critic Guy Dammann has suggested. The veteran critic attended a screening in London last Thursday of Berliner Philharmoniker: A Musical Journey in 3D, a recording of Sir Simon Rattle conducting the Berlin Philharmonic in Mahler’s First Symphony and Rachmaninov’s Symphonic Dances in Singapore’s Esplanade concert hall last fall. The screening “dazzled on numerous levels,” Dammann wrote in the Guardian newspaper, noting that he had attended a performance of Mahler’s First by the same orchestra at London’s Albert Hall, where he could only make out “the occasional detail” of Rattle’s interpretation. “In the cinema, everything is right there, the extraordinary presence and definition of the sound revealing not just the finesse of the playing but also the gutsy energy of performances that, elsewhere, have risked seeming somewhat mannered.” But even more impressive was the 3D video, Dammann wrote approvingly, “where the audience perspective is less that of a good stalls seat (which cost [$500] or so at the [live] concert) than a helicopter darting silently around a stage.”