Orchestre Metropolitain, Montreal Canada
Tania Miller’s conducting was fresh and inquisitive and kept the audience’s interest at every turn.But it was Miller’s pulsing, joy-filled rendition of Beethoven’s Fourth Symphony that stood out. Miller made about the best case for this piece I can recall, underscoring playful moments as well as tender ones. And the whirlwind final movement was breathtaking.
Perhaps Miller's greatest achievement was to follow this stunning performance of the Beethoven, the perfect ending to the evening, with "The Blue Danube Waltz." Rather than being a letdown, it became the cherry on top….but it wouldn't have mattered which piece she ended the evening with, because there isn't a non-musical bone in her body.
"Throughout the work, [Tania Miller} kept the MSO pushing forward, breathing new life into Tchaikovsky’s Fifth Symphony. She displayed wonderful control over the orchestra as if she carried a quiver of gestures that matched perfectly the mood of each musical section.
During decrescendos, her arms seemingly stretched out the musical surface, subtly pulling it thinner and thinner until silent. And during loud sections, her gestures challenged the orchestra to match her excitement. While the sound of the orchestra was entertaining enough, watching Miller brought a new dimension to the performance.
Tchaikovsky’s Fifth was the highlight of the evening."
- Madison Capital Times
"Tania Miller delivered a blockbuster program . . . showcased an energy and conducting style that was focused, delivering a calm intensity . . . expressive, colorful and full of life . . . her confidence and musicality were appreciated by the orchestra and they responded with a huge and glittering sound. . . Miller's experience and charisma are audible."
"Friday night's performance marked the first time I have sensed the audience wanted an encore for the conductor... as [Tania Miller] finished leading Peter Ilyvich Tchaikovsky's Symphony Number 5, the Overture Hall audience collectively leaped to its feet and started not only applauding but cheering... orchestras don't do encores, but it was pretty evident Friday night that Miller will be welcome back anytime. Bill Wineke, Channel 3000
What would Miller do with the well-worn heart-on-sleeve Romanticism of Tchaikovsky’s Symphony No. 5? The result was a musical roller coaster of grand proportions, every section enjoying opportunities to pour out swaths of glorious sound. Frequently one finds cause to criticize a conductor for being too arbitrary or extreme in tempo changes within the movements, but again what we experienced Sunday had more to do with a vivid illustration of what can be done with dynamics. This is not just a matter of abrupt changes to various degrees of loud and soft, but a true palette of surges and swells, ebbs and flows along the gradient of loud and soft. True, Miller did push tempos at times, certainly in the last third of the finale, and the MSO was up to the technical challenge.
Madison classical music blog
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