GISÈLE BEN-DOR , conductor



Ginastera's Beatrix Cenci, European Premiere

Tribune de Geneve

"Gisèle Ben-Dor is a master conductor. Rarely has the Orchestre de la Suisse Romande sounded at once so sensitive and powerful. The ability to reveal clearly the slightest nuance of the text and unchain the utmost sonic violence at the same time is the mark of great musicians. The Uruguayan conductor set Ginastera's opera on fire."

- Tribune de Genève

"Gisèle Ben-Dor's conducting calls for every superlative. The conductor interprets with genius Ginestera's difficult score. At work, the Uruguayan chef reveals a solid professionalism which elicits the unanimous admiration of the musicians of the Orchestra de la Suisse Romande.

"... In her first invitation to the Grand Thêatre, unanimous admiration for her command of the Orchestra de la Suisse Romande and mastery of Ginastera's masterpiece.

"Pure talent at work ... in the pit, Gisèle Ben-Dor imparts the same feeling one experiences during her work in rehearsal: command. No useless gestures, no show-off. Petite, massive, blonde of harmonious features, she imposingly takes her place. Opening the voluminous score, she concentrates before signaling the beginning with the intensity of her extended arms ... the severity in her eyes and her pursed lips suffice to impress on the orchestra a whispering rage, building to an explosion. Every word, silently articulated like a poisonous spit, guides the chorus on the stage. In a few seconds, the musicians forget the rest of the world with her. The ability to eliminate all unnecessary fuss from orchestral conducting is gripping. Ben-Dor does not play to the house. Or to the musicians. She plunges into the musical flux and does not resurface until the end of the evening, with an equally imposing ease. The baton is vertical, simple, ample. The hand's expressiveness, carnal and inviting. The gaze is direct, the instructions clear. The conductor punches, slashes, and caresses the sounds ... she signals her appreciation and encouragement with a thumbs-up gesture throughout the performance. And it is worth emphasizing to which extent her confidence is shared. Such comforting charisma is not given to all."

- Tribune de Genève

Le Figaro, Le Monde
"The sinister evening was dominated by Gisèle Ben-Dor's iron fist. The Uruguayan conductor offered a white hot approach to this difficult score, constantly maintaining an ideal balance between the stage and the pit.
- Le Figaro

"Energetic and decisive, she surely had no intention of allowing the slightest doubt regarding the quality of the score, in which she has every reason to believe. Her resolution paid off.

- Le Monde

"Leading the Orchestre de la Suisse Romande, Gisèle Ben-Dor went well beyond the inflated approximations to which so many conductors reduce this type of score. Hers is a perfect precision, a great sonic refinement, and she has the ability to make the most complex things appear as clear and logically organized as Beethoven."

- Le Temps

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© 2011 Gisele Ben-Dor. All rights reserved.