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Books

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A celebration of the centenary of an Australian music institution.

Orchestral

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★★★★★ Clean-cut German violinist makes a devil-may-care pact with a band of HIP Italian rebels.
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★★★★★ Aussie ex-pats under Sir Simon deliver some rattling good Bruckner.
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★★★★☆ Ship ahoy, from Portsmouth Point to a jolly Roger Quilter.

Chamber

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★★★★½ Katie Noonan and Karin Schaupp deliver an exquisite, distinctive take on the South American songbook.
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★★★★½ Little and Lane make music for more than just a gentle summer afternoon.
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★★★★½ Three grand old masters interpreted by two old hands.

Instrumental

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★★★★★ Bavouzet's Modernist-meets-Gallic Beethoven gallops over finish line.
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★★★★☆ Lindberg celebrates the lute masters of Renaissance.
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★★★½☆ An intimate disc of inward Chopin from a sympathetic soul.

Vocal & Choral

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★★★★★ The Norwegian Soloists take us from comforting to confronting.
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★★★★☆ Out of the ordinary programme gets to the very heart of Christmas.
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★★★☆☆ Super-sized Messiah: no fries, but plenty of spicy extras.

Opera

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★★★★★ Kansas diva argues an eloquent case for making peace not war.
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★★★★☆ Lehár's bittersweet late triumph becomes a hit for Munich Radio.
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★★★★★ Less is more in another original take on the Creation myth.

Film

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Chandor’s Third outing proves this canny director’s unpredictability.
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This comedy of table manners is all too light on laughter.
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Short on new detail, there’s not much to blow a whistle about.