Verdi was primarily a composer of opera. His Messa da Requiem, first performed in 1874 as a tribute to the late Italian poet and author Alessandro Manzoni, can be heard, to quote conductor Hans von Bülow, as “Oper im Kirchengewande” (“opera in church robes”).

The West Australian Symphony Orchestra’s principal conductor Asher Fisch is an acclaimed conductor of opera. Even his fine interpretations of romantic orchestral masterworks sound operatically conceived, in terms of their soloistic and concertante characterisations, their narrative...

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