Mark Wigglesworth / Netherlands Radio Philharmonic Orchestra

Shostakovich: Symphony No. 11

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Mark Wigglesworth leads the Netherlands Radio Philharmonic in this 2009 recording of Shostakovich's Eleventh Symphony with technical security; he clearly knows his way around the score and has the ability to elicit a cogent and capable performance from his orchestra. The playing is immensely powerful; the Dutch musicians have the strength, subtlety, and sensitivity to deliver an account of the hour-long work that fulfills all its technical demands. BIS' magnificent super audio sound gives the listener the full immersion treatment. What's missing is commitment to the music. Shostakovich's Eleventh is more nuanced than Wigglesworth and the Dutch musicians give it credit for, and their performance seems sadly superficial. The Eleventh here sounds like a monumental score for a movie that was never made, and listeners who believe the score has more substance than that will likely want more.

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