Geraldine Freedman The Daily Gazette
“(…) Selections from Tchaikovsky’s “The Nutcracker Suite” were exuberant and light as air. Deneve set brisk tempos, got seamless ensemble work and lots of flair. (…)

Tchaikovsky’s “Solemn Overture, 1812” sounded fresh in Deneve’s hands. The crowd jumped to its feet. (…)

Deneve first led the orchestra in a rocket blast reading of Glinka’s Overture to “Ruslan and Lyudmila,” which was characterized by tight phrasing, taut rhythms and melodies that floated. (…) Shostakovich’s Symphony No. 5 (1937), a work that saved the composer’s career, was accompanied appropriately here by thunder and lightning. The orchestra performed magnificently. Haunting melodies, huge climaxes, big brassy bold moments, anguish, irony, a memorable slow searching movement that ends with hope, and a finale that moves from splashy bravura to ominous voices before it builds to glory, all transfixed the crowd. Applause and cheers were long and loud.”

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