Cheltenham Festival – The Guardian

Howard’s musical narrative charted Cheltenham’s evolution from country backwater to bustling spa thanks to the discovery of mineral springs three centuries ago, moving from rural calm to bubbling gurgles and gradually more explosive surges towards a fuller orchestral plushness.
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The Cunning Little Vixen – Sunday Express

A life-enhancing evening.

The Cunning Little Vixen – Daily Telegraph

The music-making was simply wonderful. Rattle and the LSO find the perfect balance between what one might call the spring and autumn aspects of the score – its mercurial freshness and its warm glow, its animal energy and its human melancholy. The playing was superb throughout, and one could especially relish the range of colours produced by the strings. Rattle shaped it all with consummate grace and playfulness: there was love in every bar.
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The Cunning Little Vixen – Opera Online (FR)

Aux images mentales de la mise en espace se greffe l’euphorie d’écoute d’un London Symphony Orchestra toujours optimiste et admirablement dirigé par Sir Simon Rattle.
(To the mental images of the setting is added the euphoria of listening to a London Symphony Orchestra always optimistic and beautifully led by Sir Simon Rattle.)
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The Cunning Little Vixen – The Arts Desk

From David Elton’s cheeky trumpet and Gareth Davies’s rhapsodic flute to the uncanny muted brass and the spine-tingling string shimmer that guest leader Tomo Keller drew from his crew, Rattle and his forces could on their own transport us into the trackless heart of the woodlands where Janáček’s creatures live, love and die.
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The Cunning Little Vixen – The Observer

In a week heavy with fur and feathers, a quick word of high praise for the LSO Discovery children who participated – as woodland creatures – in Janáček’s The Cunning Little Vixen, thrillingly performed at the Barbican by the LSO and Simon Rattle and other rather good adults (Lucy Crowe and Gerald Finley for a start)
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The Cunning Little Vixen – Classical Source

Even more spellbinding are the sounds Rattle draws from the LSO. The lower strings especially have a glow and depth that gives the music an imperturbable, slow vitality, while the brass is impossibly nimble and astutely characterised. It is a performance in which for a while we collectively lived in the present, and it’s quite a bump coming back down to Earth.
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The Cunning Little Vixen – Sunday Times

The London Symphony Chorus excelled itself in the Vixen and Fox’s wedding, while LSO’s Discovery Voices embodied a larger than usual brood of fox cubs. Delightful.
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The Cunning Little Vixen – The Stage

Exceptional, too, are the two large choral ensembles who play the groups of forest animals, especially those celebrating the Vixen’s wedding to Sophia Burgos’ dapper Fox, and later their numerous offspring, represented by members of the London Symphony Chorus plus the well-trained kids of LSO Discovery Voices. Conductor Simon Rattle, meanwhile, draws sumptuous sounds from the orchestra in a favourite work.
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The Cunning Little Vixen – Bachtrack (FR)

Il ne restera, après l'émotion, que le triomphe d'une production dont la réussite tient à une exceptionnelle réunion de talents.
(After emotion, there will be only the triumph of a production whose success is due to an exceptional meeting of talents.)
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The Cunning Little Vixen – Bachtrack

Providing the musical backdrop was an irresistible London Symphony Orchestra lead by Sir Simon Rattle – whose first interaction with the piece whilst still a student at the Royal Academy made him want to become an opera conductor. We’re talking puppies off the leash: visceral, headstrong and living utterly in the moment.
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The Cunning Little Vixen – Opera Today

The LSO did not just mimic or suggest stage movement or feeling, they took responsibility for the drama, filling in the gaps in the episodic structure, immersing us in a glorious musical embrace.
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The Cunning Little Vixen – The Times

The LSO strings snapped into life, their spiccato bowing a thrum of beating insect wings. Into the woods we went.
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