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Elgar The Apostles, BBC Symphony Orchestra, BBC Symphony Chorus, Davis, Barbican Hall

Sir Colin Davis photo Chris ChristodoulouSir Adrian Boult laid the foundations for its revival, more recently Sir Mark Elder found astonishing illumination within it, and now a third knight of the realm – Sir Andrew Davis (the latest recipient of the Elgar Medal) – chivalrously stamps his authority on it and brings it in from the cold. Elgar’s The Apostles[Read More]

Posted on 13/04/2014
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Posted in Classical Music, Reviews

Elgar “The Dream of Gerontius”, Davis, Barbican

Some performances evolve so naturally, so inevitably, that they feel – bespoke. Andrew Davis has a long history with both the BBC Symphony Orchestra (who gave him his first big break) and Elgar’s The Dream of Gerontius and from that moment in the Prelude where the cellos intimate some eternal lullaby to the ebbing arpeggios … [Read More]

Posted on 07/04/2014
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Posted in Classical Music, Reviews

The Last Night of the Proms, Royal Albert Hall (Review)

Marin Alsop conducts at the Last Night of the PromsAs it came to pass, Marin Alsop’s nationality was rather more of a factor than her gender on this historic Last Night of the Proms – but her deft put-down of remarks made only the week before (pace Petrenko) suggested that it might take a little more time (it’s only 2013, for heaven’s sake) … [Read More]

Posted on 08/09/2013
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Posted in Classical Music, Reviews

Prom 1, BBC Symphony Orchestra & Choruses, Oramo (Review)

The 119th season of BBC Proms opened not with a bang but with barely a murmur. A thrumming, like the beating of tiny insect wings, like the hum of summer, looked towards not just the season ahead but eternity. Julian Anderson’s setting of words by the mystical 19th century naturist Richard Jeffries had a syncopated, … [Read More]

Posted on 13/07/2013
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Posted in Classical Music, Reviews

BBC Symphony Orchestra & Chorus, Bychkov, Barbican Hall

Ask not for whom the bell tolls. Rachmaninov didn’t: he knew. Or rather he was convinced that they all tolled for him. His splendid choral symphony The Bells is full of ominous premonition with even the “Silver Sleigh Bells” of a lost youth – scintillating with some of the composer’s most expensive orchestration – promising … [Read More]

Posted on 20/03/2011
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