Opera Holland Park - 2015
'In the pit‚ the City of London Sinfonia played the well-crafted score for all it was worth‚ while conductor Matthew Waldren explored and extolled its many subtle French niceties'
George Hall; Opera News; November 2015
'Matthew Waldren got the orchestra in the right zone of ethereal foofla‚ and any longueurs were certainly down to Delibes'
Robert Thicknesse; Opera Now; October 2015
'That the evening hung together so well was down to Matthew Waldren's conducting, which brought out the score's well-mannered colours, its nudges into drama and its sensuousness, with excellent playing from the City of London Sinfonia. Even Waldren, though, has his work cut out keeping our attention in the two-hour stretch of Acts 1 and 2, but he kept his cool in a style that drifts from ballet prettiness into bel canto and dabs of Impressionism'
Opera; September 2015
'Matthew Waldren led a vivid account of Delibes’ colourful score, sparkling nicely in the Opéra Comique style choruses and the quintet for the Brits in Act II...The ballet bristled with vigour – especially the lively timpani – and harp and glockenspiel were perfectly in time in the Bell Song.'
Mark Pullinger; Bachtrack; July 2015
' ***** Conductor Matthew Waldren whipped up a storm from the City of London Sinfonia when needed, but also found space for the chamber sonorities of the many delicate instrumental solos – especially from the flute and other woodwinds. It was a real pleasure to see the full orchestra rather than losing them to view in a conventional pit, and the good balance between singers and players throughout the evening confirmed the wisdom of this decision.'
Tim Hochstrasser; British Theatre; August 2015
'The excellence of the performance is rounded out by elegant and sensitive singing from the Opera Holland Park Chorus, and an assured contribution from the City of London Sinfonia that responds ably to Matthew Waldren – the pathos of that ‘Flower Duet’ owing in no small part to the alertness of his conducting.'
Richard Whitehouse; Classical Source; July 2015
'Matthew Waldren gets clean playing from the orchestra.'
Richard Fairman; Financial Times; July 2015
'Under conductor Matthew Waldren, City of London Sinfonia manages a convincing French accent. '
Nick Kimberley; London Evening Standard; July 2015
'This opera is full of wonderful moments to which Matthew Waldren in the orchestra pit gave great effect with a mix of liveliness, charm and solemnity'
Mark Ronan; Mark Ronan Theatre Reviews; July 2015
'Matthew Waldren conducts superbly, keeping everything balanced and precise, which is not easy given both the tented area’s acoustic and the specific demands of this opera.'
Sam Smith; MusicOMH, July 2015
'Matthew Waldren and the City of London Sinfonia played Delibes’ fragrant orchestrations to the manner born.'
Sebastian Petit; Opera Brittania; July 2015
'There was certainly considerable attention to the detail, and a sustained, thoughtful expressiveness to the instrumentalists’ phrasing; the individual voices could be clearly heard, as if characters in the opera — and it certainly sounded as if the players cared about the music...conductor Matthew Waldren was in full command of the details.'
Claire Seymour; Opera Today; July 2015
'Musically, the opera works beautifully. The City of London Sinfonia under conductor Matthew Waldren captures the lushness of the score.'
Clare Colvin; Sunday Express; July 2015
'[the] expert baton of Matthew Waldren, conducting a very fine City of London Sinfonia with some first-rate wind solos and wacky timpani playing from Tristan Fry in the Act Two divertissement.'
David Nice; The Arts Desk; July 2015
'Here is a rare opportunity to hear a gem of the French operatic repertory, beautifully sung and sensitively played...Its scene-painting is atmospheric, its melodies are sensuous, its orchestration lush, its pace languorous – and it is to the credit of Matthew Waldren that his shapely conducting doesn’t soup or whip it up factitiously. The City of London Sinfonia plays every note lovingly.'
Rupert Christiansen; The Daily Telegraph; July 2015
'Musically, everything is at a consistently high level. Matthew Waldren conducts crisply and the City of London Sinfonia’s playing is full of good things.'
Martin Kettle; The Guardian; July 2015
'the superb playing of the City of London Sinfonia under conductor Matthew Waldren.'
Alexandra Coghlan; The Independent; July 2015
'Delibes’s Lakmé – the opera about the Hindu priestess and her intoxicated lover, the British officer Gerald – almost flew by on the second night of Opera Holland Park’s new staging, thanks to terrific musical standards...Given that the first two acts before the interval at Opera Holland Park last exactly two hours, any sense of lift-off was some achievement on the part of all involved: Matthew Waldren conducting, with zestful, finely shaped playing from the City of London Sinfonia.'
Fiona Maddox; The Observer; July 2015
'The City of London Sinfonia, conducted by Matthew Waldren, lap up every woodwind caress and piquant phrase.'
Geoff Brown; The Spectator; July 2015
'There’s consistently impressive playing from the City of London Sinfonia, while conductor Matthew Waldren maintains a focused eye on the music’s expressive aims...Verdict: Conducted with distinction by Matthew Waldren.'
George Hall; The Stage; July 2015
'Under Mathew Waldren the City of London Sinfonia played remarkably well.'
Hugh Canning; The Sunday Times; August 2015
'Matthew Waldren conducts a handsome account of this heavily upholstered score.'
Anna Pickard; The Times; July 2015
'Derivative hokum though it is, those ravishing melodies carry it along and this crisp, hurtling account by Matthew Waldren and the City of London Sinfonia runs an electric charge through Delibes' score.'
Mark Valencia; What's On Stage; July 2015