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Matthew Halls

Matthew Halls

Matthew Halls is the Artistic Director of Retrospect Ensemble, one of the UK's most exciting young conductors and an acclaimed keyboard player.



J.S. Bach: Harpsichord Concertos
J.S. Bach: Harpsichord Concertos
Matthew Halls directs Retrospect Ensemble in this fascinating recording of Harpsichord Concertos. 

CKD 410  

The Super Audio Collection Vol. 6
The Super Audio Collection Vol. 6
Includes premiere recordings, memorable debuts and new takes on popular repertoire. 

AKP 408  

Purcell: Twelve Sonatas in Three Parts
Purcell: Twelve Sonatas in Three Parts
Retrospect Trio perfectly capture the timeless beauty of Purcell's Twelve Sonatas in Three Parts. 

CKD 374  

J.S. Bach: Easter and Ascension Oratorios
J.S. Bach: Easter and Ascension Oratorios
A spectacular performance of Bach's choral music led by Matthew Halls. 

BKD 373  

J.S. Bach: Goldberg Variations
J.S. Bach: Goldberg Variations
Bach's popular works performed by Retrospect Ensemble's Artistic Director, Matthew Halls. 

CKD 356  

Purcell: Ten Sonatas in Four Parts
Purcell: Ten Sonatas in Four Parts
The first recording with this new super-group marks the 350th birthday of Henry Purcell 

BKD 332  

Baroque Recorder Concertos
Baroque Recorder Concertos
The dazzling debut from virtuoso recorder player Pamela Thorby - a Gramophone 'Editor's Choice'. 

CKD 217  

Matthew Halls 

The word “versatile” is often applied to musicians; in the case of the British conductor Matthew Halls, it is particularly well deserved. With his probing and vibrant interpretations of music of all periods, he is known for his dynamic and intelligent work with major symphony orchestras, choirs and opera companies.

Artistic Director of the Oregon Bach Festival from 2013-2017, he has led performances of repertoire ranging from Monteverdi’s Vespers to Mahler’s Symphony No. 2. Halls opened the 2016 festival with one of Bach’s most celebrated works, the Mass in B minor, performed for the first time in the festival’s history on period instruments. Alongside works by Schubert, Brahms and Mendelssohn, the season also saw Halls conduct the world premiere of Sir James MacMillan’s A European Requiem.

Halls is regularly welcomed to orchestras across Europe. This season sees him debut with the Royal Philharmonic Orchestra, Vienna Symphony and the NDR Radiophilharmonie, whilst he returns once again to the Iceland Symphony Orchestra. Halls has led performances with the Bergen Philharmonic, Concentus Musicus Wien, Konzerthausorchester Berlin, Royal Scottish National, RTE National Symphony, and the Tonkünstler Orchestra NÖ. He makes regular appearances in Austria and on tour with the Salzburg Mozarteum Orchestra with whom he made his Salzburg Festival debut in 2015, and in November 2016 he leads them on a tour of the US.

Increasingly in demand by North American orchestras Halls has received invitations from the Cleveland Orchestra, Indianapolis Symphony, Los Angeles Chamber Orchestra, Philadelphia Orchestra, and the Seattle and Toronto Symphony Orchestras. North American appearances this season include his New York debut at the Lincoln Center’s Mostly Mozart Festival in a performance with Joshua Bell; he debuts with the Cincinnati, Milwaukee and Dallas Symphony Orchestras, and returns to Cleveland, Indianapolis and Calgary. Further afield, Halls has featured in Australia with the Adelaide, Melbourne and West Australian Symphony Orchestras, in Russia with Musica Viva Moscow and last season with the Hong Kong Sinfonietta. With a re-invitation from the Adelaide Symphony Orchestra, Halls spends a period in Australia again in 2017, also conducting the Auckland and Tasmanian Symphony Orchestras.

In the opera house, Halls has worked with companies such as the Bayerische Staatsoper, Central City Opera Colorado, Handelfestspiele Halle, Salzburg Landestheater and the Netherlands Opera in repertoire such as Britten’s Peter Grimes and Bellini’s Norma. Spring 2014 saw him lead Handel’s Ariodante at the Aalto-Musiktheater Essen, resulting in a re-invitation to conduct performances of Puccini’s Madama Butterfly in the 2015/16 season.

Halls is represented on disc with Handel’s Parnasso in Festa, winner of the Stanley Sadie Handel Recording Prize, released by Hyperion. His recordings on Linn Records are highlighted by a set of four Bach Harpsichord Concertos conducted from the keyboard, and award-winning discs of Purcell’s Sonatas in Three and Four Parts. Matthew Halls was educated at Oxford University and subsequently taught at the University for five years. Committed to education and working with young musicians, he has taught regularly at summer schools and courses.


Management - http://www.hazardchase.co.uk/
Retrospect in the Charts
29 October 2012
No.13 in the UK Specialist Chart
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BBC Disc of the Month
19 October 2012
for Retrospect Ensemble's Bach
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OBF and Matthew Halls announcement
25 August 2011
OBF names Matthew Halls as Artistic Director
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Retrospect in the Classical Charts
11 April 2011
Bach enters at number 15
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Meeting Matthew Halls
10 February 2011
Matthew Halls in person with BBC Music Magazine
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Limelight
4 Stars
'...illuminating details, crisp rhythmic articulation and clever yet tasteful ornamentation.'
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Klassik
4 Stars
,,Mühen und ist zugleich brillanter Impulsgeber für das Zusammenwirken mit dem Ensemble.''
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Opera News
'A new period-instrument ensemble from London brings verve, precision and spontaneity to a recording of J. S. Bach's Easter and Ascension Oratorios.'
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The Consort
'This particular recording, featuring the Retrospect Ensemble, has a lot to recommend it; especially the technically refined and elegant quality of both the orchestra and the soloists. The choruses are refreshingly crisp and bright, sung in a soloistic manner that I find very appealing.'
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BBC Music Magazine
'...irresistible energy.'
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BBC Music Magazine
5 Stars
Chamber Disc of the Month: 'The Retrospect Trio speak the language of Purcell as if it was their mother tongue.'
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allmusic.com
4½ Stars
'The ensemble's sound is exquisite, and the pair of violinists and the basso continuo of bass viol and harpsichord or organ produce a vibrant blend that gleams with authentic period sonorities and ornamentation.'
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International Record Review
IRR Outstanding Award: 'This is an utterly delightful disc.'
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MusicWeb International
'Now they complete the set with the three-part works, in which they are just as recommendable if not even more so.'
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Slipped Disc
'He won the Oregon post fair and square from several impressive candidates.'
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Oregon Music News
'...a rising star in the classical music world with a stellar background in Baroque music...'
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OregonLive.com
'...a bright British conductor...'
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Fanfare
'Heartily recommended.'
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Classica
4 Stars
'...le duo meditative de la soprano et flute traversière idéalment assure par Carolyn Sampson et Rachel Brown.'
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Oregon Music News
'Halls led the Handel piece with crisp stickwork that resulted in a thoroughly engaging performance.'
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tommanoff.com
'...the conductor is an exceptional interpreter of [Purcell's] music.'
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RegistedGuard.com
'...an incisive yet expressive technique that made for an scintillating concert.'
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Audiophile Audition
5 Stars
Multichannel Disc of the Month: 'The fact is that there is not a weak link anywhere in this cast...'
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RegistedGuard.com
'early music whiz Matthew Halls'
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Denver Post
'It is brought vividly and organically to life by conductor Matthew Halls, who outdoes himself in his third appearance with the company...'
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MusicWeb International
"...the Linn recording is a must."
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Scotland on Sunday
5 Stars
"There is plenty of action and passion in these two, quite different, works..."
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Gramophone
'The Retrospect Ensemble's orchestral playing and choral singing is of the highest quality...'
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Audio Video Club of Atlanta
'...the impression is that of heavenly beauty without earthly weight...'
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BBC Music Magazine
4 Stars
'...enjoyably relaxed and unselfconscious performances.'
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International Records Review
'...highly impressive playing...'
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Pizzicato
5 Stars
'...superbement interprétées.'
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San Francisco Classical Voice
'The soloists are all excellent.'
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McAlister Matheson Music
'top class'
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The Observer
"Matthew Halls directs sprightly singers and accomplished players."
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The Times
4 Stars
"A disc to make your heart leap."
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AudioVideoHD
'...dirigiendo esta brillante y fresca interpretación de dos de los tres monumentales oratorios de Bach...'
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Early Music Review
'Fielding an excellent group of singers and players, and with soloists of such calibre, this is a landmark Bach recording.'
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The Sunday Times
4 Stars
Classical Record of the Week: "Top-drawer Bach throughout, beautifully recorded and documented by Linn."
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SA-CD.net
5 Stars
"Retrospect Ensemble simply sparkles in this repertoire...Johann Sebastian himself would give this one not 5 but 10 stars as well."
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The Scotsman
5 Stars
"Musical highs don't come much better...Conductor Matthew Halls gleans warmth from this wonderful music."
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Classics Today
5 Stars
'...can boast renditions of Bach's Easter and Ascension oratorios as fine as--or better than--any in the catalog.'
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Musical Pointers
"The recording at St Jude's Church in Hampstead...makes the most of a perfect acoustic."
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Fanfare
'A very good solo debut from an artist of whom I hope to hear more of soon.'
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Klassik.com
4 Stars
'Eine wertvolle, in vieler Hinsicht überzeugende Einspielung.'
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Opus Musica
"En esta grabación exhibe todas las virtudes por las que ha sido calurosamente aplaudido: virtuosismo, sensibilidad, refinamiento y vivacidad."
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High Fidelity
"Warto te plyte miec."
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International Record Review
IRR Outstanding: "[Halls displays] a natural grace and refinement, and a lightness of touch and delicacy of ornamentation..."
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Musical Pointers
"For "straight" accounts on harpsichord, Matthew Halls is as good as any..."
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MusicWeb International
"I had high expectations of his Bach. I was not disappointed."
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Audiophile Audition
4 Stars
"I am sure it will be getting a lot of play time at my place."
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Dallas Morning News
"...the most convincing and most moving I've ever heard."
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The Scotsman
5 Stars
"Halls reveals...needle-sharp precision, stylistic awareness and suitably restrained flamboyance."
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