Andrew Davis and the Verdi Requiem

John Gilks, Opera Ramblings

It’s forty years since Sir Andrew Davis first conducted the TSO and to celebrate the fact the TSO programmed a run of Verdi Requiems with Sir Andrew conducting.  I caught the last performance last night.  It’s in some ways a curious piece; very operatic and not especially liturgical but it does have its subtleties; the very quiet opening and the tenor solo Ingemisco for example but there’s also some moments of drama that are far from subtle.  The Dies irae is appropriately loud, even terrifying and it’s used as an accent before the Lacrymosa and during the Libera me.  It’s quite a compelling 90 minutes or so.

… The orchestra, complete with off stage brass high up at the back of the hall, and choir; the Toronto Mendelssohn Choir were on excellent form.  The choir is large and can produce sound ranging from considerable subtlety to the full on power needed to work with the hundred odd musicians, heavy on the brass and drums, in the big climaxes.

Read the full review online.