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Jens F. Laurson
Ionarts, January 2013

Best Recording of 2012: # 7

I have a soft spot for most of the disreputable Hans Pfitzner’s unabashedly romantic tone. Under Kirill Petrenko [Palestrina] sounds the way I want to hear it: delightfully crisp, full of purpose, nuance, detail, and even joy. It turns Palestrina from admirable craftsmanship into a sanguineous musical drama. The quality singers—among them Peter Bronder, Britta Stallmeister, Claudia Mahnke, Wolfgang Koch, and Johannes Martin Kränzle—add to the delight, but the Frankfurt Opera Orchestra and its conductor are the stars. © 2013 Ionarts Read complete review

Mike Ashman
Gramophone, September 2012

Oehms’s new release…[is] a well played-in ensemble performance under a wise old stage director (Harry Kupfer).

Conductor Kirill Petrenko, leader of Bayreuth’s bicentenary Ring, matches Rudolf Kempe’s recently rediscovered 1955 Salzburg performance (Walhall): they’re both compelling story-tellers of large-scale operatic narrative who can mix and match dialogue scenes with varied tempi and dramatically appropriate orchestral balance. Frankfurt’s cast has plenty of gutsy ecclesiastical characters in the Council scene, Stallmeister and Mahnke do well by Ighino and Silla…Koch is a worthy Borromeo and the whole is a triumph for British tenor Peter Bronder in the title-role. Unless you’re allergic to live recordings, there’s little to complain about there either. At the moment I’d look for my recorded Palestrina from this new Oehms…© 2012 Gramophone Read complete review on Gramophone

Kurt Moses
American Record Guide, September 2012

The opera is Pfitzner’s greatest and most admired work. The Frankfurt Opera orchestra is very good; and the Russian conductor Kirill Petrenko, using fleet tempos, injects some welcome excitement into this wordy work. Texts and translations and very good sound. © 2012 American Record Guide Read complete review on American Record Guide online

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