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Performer: Vienna Philharmonic

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Suntory Hall hosts the Vienna Philharmonic in exceptional times

Valery Gergiev © Suntory Hall
"Is the Vienna Philharmonic coming or not?" This had been the talk of town amongst classical music fans in Japan since September, when its concert scene regained some semblance of normality.
*****
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A warm Viennese embrace as Wagner and Bruckner meet in Salzburg

Elīna Garanča © Salzburg Festival | Marco Borrelli
Forget powerhouse “hojotohos” and sandblasting brass. Elīna Garanča and Christian Thielemann offered more intimate portraits of these composers at the Großes Festspielhaus.
*****
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A granitic Beethoven 9 from Muti in Salzburg

Riccardo Muti © Salzburg Festival | Marco Borrelli
“Go big or go home” could easily have been the motto of this summer’s festival. Muti didn’t just go big. He went huge. 
***11
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Mahler in all his might: raising the roof in Salzburg

Andris Nelsons conducts the Vienna Philharmonic © Salzburg Festival | Marco Borrelli
In a pandemic era of chamber reductions, the joy in this Mahler 6 was hearing an orchestra of 108 musicians let off the leash. 
****1
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School for lovers: Loy’s bitter lessons at the Salzburg Festival

Andrè Schuen (Guglielmo), Elsa Dreisig (Fiordiligi), Marianne Crebassa (Dorabella) © Salzburg Festival | Monika Rittershaus
It's difficult to believe Salzburg could have cast a finer Così in Loy's Covid-reduced production in the Großes Festspielhaus.
****1
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There will be blood: Elektra in Salzburg

Aušrinė Stundytė (Elektra) © Bernd Uhlig | Salzburger Festspiele
An Elektra conducted like Mendelssohnian fairy music, sung not shouted, just as Strauss required.
****1
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