Review: London Symphony Orchestra at Birmingham Symphony Hall

It is hard to imagine a more thrilling, musically volcanic work than Beethoven’s Symphony No. 9, The Choral.

Beethoven's 1st and 9th Symphonies

London Symphony Orchestra, Monteverdi Choir

Birmingham Symphony Hall

Review by John Watson

It is hard to imagine a more thrilling, musically volcanic work than Beethoven’s Symphony No. 9, The Choral.

On Friday at Symphony Hall, in Birmingham, the sell-out audience was treated to a simply stupendous performance by the London Symphony Orchestra, soloists and chorus.

Sir John Eliot Gardiner directed a performance that was both refined in its attention to detail, and explosive in its emotional impact.

The soloists – soprano Rebecca Evans, mezzo soprano Wilke Te Brummelstroete, tenor Michael Spyres and bass Vuyani Mlinde – were in the centre of the orchestra, yet the voices projected perfectly.

Special mention must go to the orchestra’s superb principal piccolo player Sharon Williams.

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