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Huntley Dent
Fanfare, September 2015

Orchestra and chorus are more than up to par. Soprano Christine Schäfer…brings an actual air of devotion to her part, singing with accuracy and excellent enunciation into the bargain. She’s undoubtedly the best thing here. © 2015 Fanfare Read complete review

Peter Quantrill
Gramophone, July 2015

Most fascinating to me is Christine Schäfer, who in voice and even appearance becomes a Karajan soprano of the late ’60s/early ’70s, perhaps having keenly discerned where and when the performance feels most at home. © 2015 Gramophone Read complete review on Gramophone

John Quinn
MusicWeb International, May 2015

Normally I like to hear Brahms played without excessive dalliance; his music has backbone and performers need to remember that. I think what has converted me on this occasion to such an expansive performance is the sheer quality of the playing and singing. In particular, the Chor des Bayerischen Rundfunks…sing magnificently from start to finish. Their depth of tone is admirable as is their observance of dynamics and the technical control behind their singing. When they sing full-out the sound is thrilling but time and again they prove how exciting it can be to hear a choir singing very quietly. Theirs is an exceptionally good contribution.

The orchestra is equally good. Throughout the performance the orchestral sound is cultivated and refined—burnished would be an apt word—though when required there’s ample power too,

Thielemann’s isn’t the only way with this great work but it seems to me that on its own terms it’s a distinguished performance. …the dedication of the performers and, especially, the superb choral singing wins the day for me. © 2015 MusicWeb International Read complete review

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