Rupert Christiansen, Daily Telegraph. Toronto Mendelssohn Choir and Toronto Symphony Orchestra, conducted by Sir Andrew Davis, Chandos. 5 stars ... "For Unto Us a Child Is Born" and "All We Like Sheep" are highlights, sung by the superb 150-strong Toronto Mendelssohn Choir with a fugal exhilaration that doesn't preclude exemplary diction and precision. They are the starts of the show, but all four soloists are excellent too.
Brian Chang, Musical Toronto. Handel’s Messiah is a masterwork of remarkable writing that has lasted centuries of performance. This work is a staple of the Holiday season, and chances are you will catch a performance of it in full or selections from it over the course of the holiday. Between the Toronto Symphony Orchestra/Toronto Mendelssohn Choir and Tafelmusik Baroque Orchestra/Tafelmusik Chamber Choir alone, 15,000 people will hear and experience the music over a two week period.
Much can be said about the love-hate relationship of Choristers, musicians, and conductors and the work. Today, we’re going to explore stories of musicians who have performed the work and when things have just gone off the rails. These are stories of Messiah Follies.
David Olds, The Wholenote December 2016 review of Chandos recording of Handel Messiah: this new recording does the Toronto Symphony Orchestra, Toronto Mendelssohn Choir and, indeed, Toronto itself proud.
Andrew Fletcher, NEMM.org, UK. Sir Andrew Davis claims that for this new concert edition, he wanted to do a ‘grand’ version, and sought to “keep Handel’s notes, harmonies and style intact, but to make use of all the colours available from the modern symphony orchestra”. This goal is achieved, with an overall ‘bright’ feel that is vital, fresh and exuberant, but not overcooked.