Review: Norwich Philharmonic Orchestra and Chorus

PUBLISHED: 07:08 19 March 2018 | UPDATED: 07:08 19 March 2018

David Dunnett, chorus conductor of Norwich Philharmonic Chorus. Photo: Bill Smith

David Dunnett, chorus conductor of Norwich Philharmonic Chorus. Photo: Bill Smith

Bill Smith © 2015

Christopher Smith enjoys a resounding finale to the Norwich Philharmonic’s 177th season

The Norwich Philharmonic Orchestra and Chorus concluded its 177th season in resounding fashion with Saturday’s concert.

Brahms’ serious-minded Song of Destiny served as an overture to a stirring performance of Mendelssohn’s richly tuneful Song of Praise. With texts from the psalms and adroitly managed echoes of the most famous of Lutheran chorales the work celebrates Gutenberg’s innovations in printing, a key factor in Germany’s religious and intellectual development.

At the start trombones boldly set the mood. Their theme was heard again and again as the great body of skilful singers and talented instrumentalists under conductor David Dunnett tirelessly combined with impressive strength, and, where appropriate, tasteful delicacy.

Christopher Steele proclaimed progress from darkness to enlightenment in ringing tenor tone, and Ruth Holton and Rebecca Newman were delightful in a touching soprano duet that was no worse for being something of a period piece.

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