Chandos Reviews

We try and keep a list of reviews of our concerts. We rely on people sending us the review so if you have one that is not listed here please contact us. All the reviews are copyright the original listed publication. To see the concert that the review refered to, click on the date.


It had always been a source of astonishment for me that the Chandos Symphony Orchestra achieves such a consistently high standard of performance with such limited rehearsal — which is just two weekends prior to each concert.

This plainly points to both high standards of entry and skilful, highly efficient and painstaking preparation, both of which were demonstrated in the first concert of their 1996-97 season.

The programme tended, to be much in the romantic vein — Britten's Four Sea Interludes from his opera Peter Grimes, the Kindertotenlieder song cycle by Gustav Mahler and Rachmaninov's Symphony No. 2 in E minor.

Sea Interludes made an effective start; this is a tough item for any amateur orchestra to tackle successfully.

So it was not surprising that, for instance, Sunday Morning was a bit unstable at times, the menacing brass, however, helped to create a quite terrifying Storm!

Donald Maxwell, well known as an opera singer and concert artist, sang a noteworthy Kindertotenlieder.

His is a voice of considerable range in both colour and power and he gave us a performance which revealed the full gamut of emotions in these rather tragic songs.

The orchestra has now learned to accompany with flexible sensitivity, so the total result was most satisfying.

But the symphony was without doubt the concert's high point. This is music which is full of glowing tunes and highly-coloured orchestration, making an immediate appeal to everyone, and Michael Lloyd evoked an exciting and outstandingly satisfying performance from his players. There were many admirable things about it; the violin's well-poised hesitations in the main tune of the Allegro and the well managed tonal gradation throughout were just two of them, the audience thundering with appreciative applause, recalling conductor and bringing the orchestra repeatedly to their feet many times.

Robert South