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Books

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A celebration of the centenary of an Australian music institution.

Orchestral

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★★★★☆ Brabbins ponders a new Enigma: Worcester native heads south to holiday a la Respighi in a sumptuous Elgar extravaganza.
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★★★★☆ A spectacular disc of opera for those who like them voice-free.
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★★★★★ CPE Bach performances that blow everything else away.

Chamber

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★★★★☆ Ensemble's promising debut disc reveals the alpha to Omega of charm.
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★★★½☆ New Australian works shine brightly, old French not always.
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★★★★☆ Extravagant performances show Brahms' softer side.

Instrumental

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★★★★½ Slava Grigoryan's first solo album in 15 years is well worth the wait.
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★★★★½ Osborne emerges glittering after diving into the Hammerklavier.
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★★★☆☆ A testament to the high standard at the 2016 SIPCA.

Vocal & Choral

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★★★★★ Not just an heure, Sampson casts her spell over an exquisite 80 minutes.
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★★★½☆ Pergolesi goes by way of Verdi on this starry new recording.
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★★★★☆ Saving the best till last serves a double helping of Spem in alium.

Opera

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★★★★☆ Mezzo shows off new vocal weight in 19th-century arias and scenes.
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★★½☆☆ Unique glimpse of La Stupenda’s Aussie tour, audio warts and all.
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★★★☆☆ Close harmonies from Broadway to Hollywood and back again.

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.