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Penguin Guide, January 2009

Robert Shafer conducts his chorus and the Washington Orchestra in a fresh, well-disciplined reading. The chorus is rather backwardly placed, but Shafer’s clean-cut directness helps to avoid any feeling of sentimentality. Outstanding among the soloists is Christine Brewer, and John Aler, though not as sweet-tone as usual, sings very sensitively too. The mezzo, Marietta Simpson, is tremulous as recorded, as Ding Gao is clear and reliable in the bass solos.

Andrew Stewart
Classic FM, October 2002

"Bold emotions and heart-on-sleeve expression are central to Robert Shafer's fine new recording of the work, matched by impassioned singing and playing from his Washington forces. The excellent solo team reinforces this disc's clear artistic success."

Stephen Pettitt
, October 2002

"The Washington Chorus sings with verve, and the orchestra is excellent too. Add to that a team of soloists ¡V Christine Brewer, Marietta Simpson, John Aler and the fine Chinese-born baritone Ding Gao ¡V and Naxos havs yet another ridiculously cheap feather in its cap."

Andrew Stewart
Music Week, August 2002

"This live recording adds a distinguished feather to the cap of Naxos... The heartfelt quality of Dvorak's music, affected by the death of his two-day old daughter Josefa, inspires an intense performance from Robert Schafer and his Washington forces. Likewise, the solo line-up fully engage with the work's romantic soul..."

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