"...It starts with a bang – the whirlwind intro to Le Corsaire – and finishes with the great rolling finale to Benvenuto Cellini. On the way it takes in two stalwarts in Les Francs-Juges and Le Carnaval Romaine, the Shakespearean sweep of Le Roi Lear, the Scottish political romance of Waverly and the comic interplay of Beatrice and Benedict. Davis controls all of this with a master’s touch and the orchestra responds in kind. The SACD recording compares favourably with older standbys like Colin Davis’s Staatskapelle Dresden performances and Adrian Boult’s 1950s versions with the LPO." ****
Steve Moffatt - Limelightmusic.com - 29 August 2013
“...this Berlioz disc is a winner. Andrew Davis brings out the best in them, and they provide a collection of Berlioz overtures that can stand comparison with any in the catalogue, even the - previously unrivalled - collections from the late Sir Colin Davis...”
Simon Thompson – MusicWeb-International.com – May 2013
Music ***** (Excellent) Sound ***** (Excellent)
afri - Fono Forum magazine - July 2013
***** - Exceptional
Riccardo Cassani - Musica magazine - May 2013
Riccardo Cassani - Classica magazine - May 2013
“...Very highly recommended”
Ivan March – BBC Music magazine – May 2013
Multichannel Disc of the Month
“A brilliant hi-res surround recording of the seven Berlioz Overtures.” *****
John Sunier – AudiophileAudition.com – 27 March 2013
"...enjoyably dynamic – as is everything on this extremely attractive collection."
Barry Forshaw - CDChoice.co.uk - 11 February 2013
Performance **** Recording *****
“... a vivid , large-scale recording that brings out Berlioz’s detail really clearly, of which the excellent Bergen Philharmonic Orchestra players make a great deal. I personally feel the Berlioz’s textures are most truly rendered by instruments of his time, in the brass especially, but the playing here is satisfyingly mellow and vibrant, with warm strings and sturdy woodwind, yet also refreshing and translucent. This is aided by Andrew Davis’s tempos, fairly spacious and unforced but never slack, and now and then sizzling... a welcome release.”
Michael Scott Rohan – BBC Music magazine – April 2013
"...Sir Andrew Davis conducts these colourful and inventive scores with panache and he secures colourful, rhythmically precise performances from the Norwegian orchestra which plays with zest throughout the programme. The Chandos recording is up to the usual high standards of the house - I listened to this hybrid SACD as a CD - and Hugh Macdonald’s succinct notes are ideal. If you’re looking for a set of Berlioz overtures - a highly desirable addition to any collection - then this disc has very strong claims on your attention."
John Quinn - MusicWeb-International.com - 4 March 2013
“ ... [Davis] on fine form here with the Bergen Philharmonic. The opening to the Corsaire holds no terrors for them ... The lesser-known overtures reveal their virtues well. Davis, abetted by an excellent recording, responds vividly to Berlioz’s pioneering orchestral textures...”
John Warrack – International Record Review – February 2013
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