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Daniel Barenboim was named music director designate of the CSO in January 1989, and he assumed leadership as the Orchestra’s ninth music director in September 1991, a position he held until June 2006. His music directorship was distinguished by the opening of Chicago’s new Symphony Center in 1997, highly praised operatic productions at Orchestra Hall, numerous virtuoso appearances with the Orchestra in the dual role of pianist and conductor, twenty-one international tours (including the first to South America) and an ongoing series of composer perspectives woven into the Orchestra’s subscription concerts as well as numerous recordings.
“Right from the opening notes of the Missa Solemnis it is clear that this is to be a reading of weight and moment, but the slow tempi that Barenboim chooses for most of the time seldom work in its favour...Barenboim’s dramatic gifts, so evident from his work in the opera house, come to the fore in [the Verdi] and he paces it with much more agility, moving dynamically from section to section and never dragging.”
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