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A shining display of versatility; Mahler, Schubert, Dvorak CBSO, SYMPHONY HALL.

THE CBSO, and especially the string players, had a chance to shine in a diverse programme that included Mahler's achingly poignant Kindertotenleider as the centrepiece, sitting slightly uneasily between Schubert's Unfinished Symphony No 8 and Dvorak's Symphony No 7. Mezzo Christianne Stotjin was superbly supported by the orchestra under the tightly controlled baton of conductor Karl-Heinz Steffens in the Songs On The Death Of Children, capturing the alternately elegiac and wildly griefstricken mood of this unique work.

The strings had shimmered with poised pianissimo tension in the Schubert and brought an insistent and forceful drive to Dvorak's dramatic Seventh Symphony.

There was no shortage of different shades, and plenty of darkness, all carried off with aplomb and a confident facility. VERDICT:LAURENCE MCCOY
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Publication:Birmingham Mail (England)
Date:Feb 12, 2011
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