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The Scotsman

…the climax of the work comes with a shadowy reference to the Scottish psalm-tune known as Martyrs. As played by the BBC Scottish Symphony Orchestra under Donald Runnicles, that tune could be glimpsed through a shimmering chromatic haze; the translucent textures of this graceful and economical work were beautifully rendered throughout. Michael Church

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The Guardian

Beethoven’s Fourth Symphony also danced, thanks to the well-oiled strings, the characterful wind solos – brighter-toned than in the Mozart – and, of course, Runnicles’s unflagging propulsion. The momentum he and this orchestra can generate together is quite something. Erika Jeal

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seenandheard-international.com

Donald Runnicles and his magnificent BBC Scottish Symphony Orchestra opted for a more over-arching, organic reading in which all the episodes of grotesque revelry and passages of deep introspection seemed to be the natural consequence of each other, not just moments of fleeting reminiscences or a musical representation of Mahler’s neuroses. Maestro Runnicles, who is […]

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The Herald

If it’s true that a performance can define its own context, then that is precisely what happened on Thursday night when Donald Runnicles, the BBC SSO, a quartet of distinguished soloists, and the National Youth Choir of Scotland gave a performance of Mozart’s Requiem that, quite frankly, I found wholly convincing and profoundly moving: A performance, […]

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Classics Today

Kaufmann and the marvelous Donald Runnicles, who leads sympathetically and very much in keeping with his tenor’s strengths and feelings throughout the recital, do not linger morbidly or unnecessarily over each song; nor are they rushed. Runnicles allows the freshness of Kaufmann’s soft singing to take center stage (listen to “Traume”—it’s gorgeously dreamy) and he […]

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The Herald

…..I know none who understand better the principle and practice of momentum in music than Donald Runnicles.  It characterised and propelled the SSO’s performance of Metamorphosen, which was never a funeral march and never a dirge, but a restless, seething canvas of counterpoint, whose complex textures moved ever-forward, illuminated by Runnicle’s mastery of momentum in the […]

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Seen and Heard International

But the hero of the evening was Runnicles himself.  He paced the unfolding of the great span of the act like a pschological thriller, knowing exactly when to tighten the tension and when to relax.  As a result, Wagner’s still remarkable score ebbed and flowed like the waves bearing Isolde’s ship, and everything sounded organic […]

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MusicalCriticism.com

Wagner: Götterdämmerung …under the baton of Runnicles, the musicians offered many moments of beauty, finally taking advantage of dynamics palette. Marina Romani; June 25, 2011

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San Francisco Examiner

World’s end compels experiencing Wagner’s ‘Ring’ again As before, Runnicles’ orchestra was brilliant…arriving at a world-class Siegfried’s Funeral March and Finale with heart-stopping pauses. Janos Gereben

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Opera News

It seems fair to say that at present, the DOB’s greatest strength is general music director Donald Runnicles, whose contract was recently extended until 2018. In the pit, he led a dramatically overwhelming performance, notable not only for its full-blooded and accurate brass section but for the delicate interplay of the winds and strings during […]

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