Saturday, November 14, 2015

VAUGHAN WILLIAMS Symphony No. 1 'A Sea Symphony'

“Mark Elder's Vaughan Williams cycle with The Halle is turning out to be the finest since the two by Adrian Boult - and the opening bars of this live recording of A Sea Symphony show why. The sweeping grandeur of the moment is wonderfully caught, yet there's no trace of bombast, so that even with the massed choral and orchestral forces, the big paragraphs are shaped with a sense of their lyricism that neither drags nor glibly undercuts the music's epic scale.” --BBC Music Magazine, November 2015

Gramophone Magazine Editor's Choice - Awards Issue 2015

“Elder presides over a majestic performance, brimful of lofty spectacle, abundant temperament and stunning accomplishment...Roderick Williams is on customarily refulgent and intelligent form; soprano Katherine Broderick, too, sings with heaps of passion and drama...The superbly honed choral and orchestral contribution surely testifies to many hours of painstaking preparation.” --Gramophone Magazine, Awards Issue 2015

“Elder paces the symphony grandly and is rewarded with patrician playing from The Hallé and well-blended singing from his four massed choirs. The two soloists, a strong Katherine Broderick and an articulate Roderick Williams, hold their own. Bathed in the warm acoustic of Bridgewater Hall, a nobility of utterance suffuses the whole performance.” --Financial Times, 4th September 2015 ****

“Judging the tempi on such a lengthy musical journey is no small task, and Elder’s account is to be praised for the way he avoids either flagging or rushing. A masterclass in choral symphonic music-making and conducting, and almost certainly one of my favourite discs of the year!” --Presto Classical, 4th September 2015

“The long finale – a full half-hour – is exceptionally well modulated and shrewdly paced, achieving a fusion of flow and moving intensity in which orchestral and choral colour, together with the deep expressivity and dynamism of both the baritone and the soprano Katherine Broderick, combine to attain inspiring heights.” --The Telegraph, 30th August 2015 *****

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