Matthew Halls leads Toronto Symphony in masterful Beethoven Ninth

Whatever it is that makes one of the most iconic pieces in the symphonic repertoire sound exciting, conductor Matthew Halls produced with the help of the Toronto Symphony, Mendelssohn Choir and soloists at Roy Thomson Hall on Wednesday night.
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Categories: 2012-2013 Season and Media Reviews.

Toronto Symphony Orchestra captures original energy of Beethoven’s Ninth

Matthew Halls conducts Beethoven’s Ninth for the first time in his career — and captures much of the excitement its first audience must have felt.
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Categories: 2012-2013 Season and Media Reviews.

Toronto Mendelssohn Choir takes a luxurious view of Rossini’s Petite Messe Solennelle

Gioachino Rossini would probably have barely recognized his Petite Messe Solennelle as the Toronto Mendelssohn Choir performed it on Saturday afternoon at Yorkminster Park Baptist Church. But that’s not necessarily a bad thing.
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Categories: 2012-2013 Season and Media Reviews.

TSO & Toronto Mendelssohn Choir: Concert review

The Toronto Symphony Orchestra’s gift to the city this season is a wonderfully shaped, gorgeously glowing performance of George Frideric Handel’s 1742 oratorio Messiah. With the help of four excellent soloists and an expertly prepared Toronto Mendelssohn Choir, visiting conductor — and Handel specialist — Nicholas McGegan brought an easy bounce and infectious sense of enthusiasm to this Christmastime favourite at Roy Thomson Hall on Tuesday night.
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Categories: 2012-2013 Season and Media Reviews.

Toronto Symphony makes Messiah magic at Roy Thomson Hall

There was an audible, palpable buzz in the air after Tuesday evening’s first Toronto Symphony Orchestra performance of George Frideric Handel’s Messiah. It was like going home after a pop concert.
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Categories: 2012-2013 Season and Media Reviews.

Hallelujah, it’s the Messiah: Choristers love to sing Handel’s oratorio

George Frideric Handel’s 1742 composition, the story of the prophecy, birth, life, death and resurrection of Christ, is a Christmas staple around the world and a steadfast Toronto tradition. Originally written as Easter music, it is performed here at this time of year by many choirs including Tafelmusik, Amadeus Choir, Elmer Iseler Singers, the Toronto Mendelssohn Choir and many church groups. The 150-voice Mendelssohn Choir sings a five-concert series of the Messiah with the Toronto Symphony Orchestra at Roy Thomson Hall beginning Tuesday, Dec. 18.
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Categories: 2012-2013 Season and Media Reviews.

Mendelssohn Choir’s Carmina Burana Rocks Koerner Hall

The raw power of Karl Orff's popular masterpiece, Carmina Burana, made me ecstatic the first time I heard it on record quite a few years ago. Last night's performance at Koerner Hall by the Toronto Mendelssohn choir brought back that thrill and then some.
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Categories: 2012-2013 Season and Media Reviews.

The Toronto Mendelssohn Choir vividly reminded its Koerner Hall audience on Tuesday night why Carmina Burana is one of the hits of 20th century music.

Artistic director and conductor Noel Edison led a performance of Orff's arrangement for two pianos and percussion, providing all the rhythmic force this composition needs, while softening the sound a bit at times with the rich harmonies of two concert grand pianos in their full glory.
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Categories: 2012-2013 Season and Media Reviews.

Preview: Carmina Burana makes for vivid night of Toronto Mendelssohn Choir song at Koerner Hall

If Tuesday night’s dress rehearsal is any indication, the Toronto Mendelssohn Choir’s Wednesday performance of Carl Orff’s Carmina Burana should make for a powerful evening of music. The music from the most popular piece ever written by German composer Carl Orff (1895-1982) has been used in film and television and all sorts of advertising because of its raw power. Today, 75 years after its premiere in Frankfurt, Orff’s collection of 24 songs and poems found in a Benedictine abbey still packs a visceral punch. The Toronto Mendelssohn Choir’s performance, the latest of many over its long history, added the beauty of three excellent soloists, some wonderfully subtle shaping by conductor and artistic director Noel Edison, and a nicely executed accompaniment by pianists James Bourne and Michel Ross as well as the TorQ Percussion Quartet.
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Categories: 2012-2013 Season and Media Reviews.

TSO polishes Spanish Operatic Gem to perfection

Through all the conventions of the modern symphony-going experience – the frantic drive through downtown traffic, the last-minute rush to the washrooms, the musicians filing on stage dressed for a funeral, the rustling, coughing cacophony – through all this, art broke through. The real thing. Like a brilliant burst of the sun – warm, bright, exhilarating. Doesn't happen all the time.
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Categories: 2012-2013 Season and Media Reviews.