Subject: I have found a CD that I think you would enjoy
|Wolfgang Amadeus Mozart, John Eliot Gardiner, Barbara Bonney|
Mozart: Requiem / Bonney, von Otter, Blochwitz, W. White, Gardiner
John Eliot Gardiner's 1986 recording of Mozart's unfinished Requiem, with the Monteverdi Choir and the English Baroque Soloists, is a model of clarity and grace. The soloists--Barbara Bonney, Anne Sofie von Otter, Hans Pet... more »
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John Eliot Gardiner's 1986 recording of Mozart's unfinished Requiem, with the Monteverdi Choir and the English Baroque Soloists, is a model of clarity and grace. The soloists--Barbara Bonney, Anne Sofie von Otter, Hans Peter Blochwitz, and Willard White--are supple, expressive, but never overpowering. This disc also features the lively and colorful Kyrie (k. 341). --Joshua Cody
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Mozart without stodgy German Romantic Traditions
(5 out of 5 stars)
"If you're a fan of big-boned Mozart with huge orchestras, huge choirs, overly-operatic singers, slow tempi and ironed-out articulation, stay away from this disc. Get stodgy Herby von K., or less stodgy but still muddy Aba-ba-badyo. But if you care about Mozart's music, this is a wonderful recording. Apparently some people still have Romanticism-Hangover -- that dreaded illness which makes one distort the music in the name of "tradition", egocentric expression, and the "I know better than the composer" slant. Although it's impossible to read Mozart's head and heart more than two centuries after his death, I still must say that (IMHO) this recording is certainly closer than most to the overall sound he must've had in mind. Mozart certainly didn't write all that wonderful counterpoint (the double-fugue Kyrie, for example) only for all of it to be smoothed over as a bunch of massed sonorities. Mozart did not write a D for the solo soprano only for it to be distorted by the fashionable wobble of today's singers. Need I go on? Trust me -- this is a fabulous recording of the Requiem. The soloists (especially Bonney) are superb. Gardiner is one of that rare breed of conductors who often achieve maximum intensity AND maximum clarity. Marriner's recording (also on Philips) is perhaps slightly more intense, but it's not as clear, and the recording quality is not as good as Gardiner's disc. This disc is a treasure. The D minor Kyrie is such a gem of a work, and performed with just as much polish and intensity as the Requiem."
Gardiner gives a close look back in the past
bigmikedc | Sugar Hill, GA United States | 01/07/2003
(5 out of 5 stars)
"My compliments to Gardiner and his talented Monteverdi Choir along with the English Baroque Soloists. I have previously bought his equally accurate Beethoven: Missa Solemnis and have ever since had the upmost respect for this indeed rare conductor. To say that this is one of the more accurate versions of Mozart's Requiem is an understatement. So many other conductors seem to have this piece entirely interpreted wrong. To be honest, I dont think it's really an accidental interpretation of Mozart's last work. I believe these conductors often ignore the way they feel a composer's work should be interpreted and replace it with their own vision. That may be ok for study purposes in some schools or universities but it is entirely wrong for public performances and recordings. Gardiner does this piece justice by returning us all to the 18th century and his singers and orchestra are immediately stating that fact with the very first movement, Requiem. It takes out the overly operatic feeling of most versions of this piece and goes straight for accurate tones, style and pace. The soloists are also close to the original interpretation of this Requiem though I wish I knew why Willard White felt he had to get "creative" with certain notes here and there. Overall, an excellent piece which I feel you'll enjoy time and time again."
Good, but average
Leonardo | Argentina | 08/12/2006
(3 out of 5 stars)
"I am reviewing the reissue of Mozart forever collection which contains only the requiem (not the Kyrie) and neither has the text. (Is cheaper, of course)
The liner notes include a brief introduction and a ten "true or false" statements about this famous work, which is wellcome.
All the performers are very good. The conducting is "energetic". The Orchestra very clear, the choir is wonderfull and the soloists dont have the usual operistic vibrato of ancient times. The problem? Gardiner is superficial. The Recordare is too fast, the Benedictus slow and almost ponderous, the long notes of the Rex tremendae without necessary projection (look for Koopman) and the famous, Dies Irae, taken at such a fast speed that the orchestra simply cant make a point with the fantastic period brass section. For a very good recording of Sussmayr version, try William Christie, which contains the ave verum corpus also, has a strong quartet, and almost good choir and, most important, a conductor which uses fast speeds when necessary and is not afraid of holding down tension when music asks for relax (as in the recordare)."