Sunday, 19 June 2011

CD Reviews (The Straits Times, June 2011)

MAHLER Symphony No.2 “Resurrection”
Orchestra of the Music Makers / CHAN TZE LAW
OMM Live! / *****

It is often said that recordings can never replace the experience of a “live” concert. However if that concert happens to be one of massive significance, a recording of it becomes a treasured document. 10 July 2010 at Esplanade Concert Hall presented such an event, one that marked a definitive coming of age of classical music in Singapore. The goosebumps generated by the Orchestra of Music Makers in Mahler’s Second Symphony on that magical evening may be relived over and over.

It is not just that the young group of musicians (average age: 21 years) performed like professionals that impressed, but their ability to live their dreams in playing of such confidence, assurance, and ultimately passion. Strings were especially fine, woodwind solos shone, while brass chorales (on and offstage) had a memorable burnished quality. Even the solo voices of Rebecca Chellapah and Jeong Ae Ree have been lent an extra shine on this recording. The sheer sweep, masterfully guided by Chan Tze Law, kept this listener transfixed, all through its 78 minutes. Now who needs to rush out to buy Sir Simon Rattle’s latest recording?

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