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English Symphony Orchestra review

ENGLISH SYMPHONY ORCHESTRA STREAMS AN IMAGINATIVE CONCERT

VISIONS OF CHILDHOOD
English Symphony Orchestra at Wyastone Leys
English Symphony Orchestra's latest streamed concert, Visions of Childhood, was built around the chamber-sized reduction of Mahler's Fourth Symphony made by Erwin Stein for the ground-breaking series of private concerts created a century ago by Schoenberg to offer performance opportunities to his students.
So we ended with the finale of that symphony, "Das Himmlische Leben", soprano April Fredrick so resourcefully communicative, the tiny ESO remarkably sonorous under Kenneth Woods' quietly urbane conducting.
This instrumental complement, brass replaced by a piano and harmonium, had in fact occasioned the strange arrangement by Woods of Wagner's Siegfried Idyll which began this beautifully-filmed event. The composer himself had scored the work originally for a tiny chamber ensemble (I have conducted it) including a pair of horns a…

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