Subject: I have found a CD that I think you would enjoy
|Vaughan Williams, Hickox, Gale|
Hodie: A Christmas Cantata, Fantasia on Christmas Carols
Genres: Special Interest, Classical
I wish more people knew about this fabulous piece. Christmas is often a painful time for classical music lovers, when Handel's Messiah, Tchaikovsky's Nutcracker, and the usual carols get hauled out and overplayed to the po... more »
I wish more people knew about this fabulous piece. Christmas is often a painful time for classical music lovers, when Handel's Messiah, Tchaikovsky's Nutcracker, and the usual carols get hauled out and overplayed to the point of insanity. There is, in fact, lots of great Christmas music that almost never gets performed or recorded, including this tuneful and brilliant cantata. This is only its second recording ever, and anyone who hears it is sure to put it on a list of holiday favorites. In fact, like all great music, it's worthy listening to for its own sake any time of the year at all. --David Hurwitz
I Searched for Years to Find This CD!!!
Paul W. Patterson, Jr. | Evanston, Illinois United States | 12/17/2001
(5 out of 5 stars)
"The final movement of Hodie captures perfectly Vaughan Williams' gripping blend of mysticism, regal glory, and human hope. The treatment of Fantasia on Christmas Carols comes right to the true bittersweet feeling of Christmas--family vs misunderstanding; hope vs trouble. My wife and I were decorating our Christmas tree during a major snow storm in our beautiful, old Chicago suburb of Evanston when I heard Fantasia on Christmas Carols for the first time, and the classical music station was playing this version. I had lost my father in October, and by the end of this piece which seems so ordinary at the start, I was completely taken over with tears. When I tried to get this CD, I was told that it was no longer available. After several years, I found this wonderful CD and it is better than any other recorded treatment of these two pieces that I have ever heard. Attention Amazon.Com Shoppers! If it is available, even during a summer heat wave, GET IT NOW! It may disappear again, and this time forever. (...)"
Christmas Music with Backbone
John F Walters | 12/13/1999
(4 out of 5 stars)
"After the nth recording of "Messiah," it's great to have these underappreciated works available on CD. Vaughan Williams' music is wonderfully melodic, but it always has a hard edge to it. A reviewer I read many years ago described the quality of "fierce caring" that marks all RVW's music. "Hodie" has lovely carols like "It Was the Winter Wild" and "The Blessed Son of God Only" that will please the most casual listener. But the Jesus of this cantata isn't just "Gentle Jesus, Meek & Mild," he is also "King of Kings and Lord of Lords," and there is a tragic as well as a triumphant quality to some of the music--see the "March of the Three Kings," for instance. I still get very emotional every time I listen to this music, even after all these years.The quality of the performance is excellent, but I prefer the old recording from the 60s on Angel, especially the balance between organ and orchestra in the final movement, and I wish it were available on CD."
What a wonderful, underrated work!
John F Walters | 11/24/1999
(5 out of 5 stars)
"I agree with everything said by the reviewer below. The "Hodie" is such awesome, exciting (almost theatrical) Christmas music...and nobody knows about it! Vaughan Williams really knows how to lay it on for the listener with a constant ebb and flow of drama. Normally I drift off during cantatas, but this had me riveted from beginning to end!"