Search - Johann Sebastian Bach, Stephen Cleobury, Ian Bostridge :: Bach - Magnificat / Gritton Chance Bostridge George AAM The Choir of Kings College Cambridge Cleobury

Bach - Magnificat / Gritton · Chance · Bostridge · George · AAM · The Choir of Kings College Cambridge · Cleobury
Johann Sebastian Bach, Stephen Cleobury, Ian Bostridge
Bach - Magnificat / Gritton Chance Bostridge George AAM The Choir of Kings College Cambridge Cleobury
Genres: Special Interest, Classical
 
  •  Track Listings (27) - Disc #1
  •  Track Listings (25) - Disc #2

With various record labels compiling complete works to commemorate the 250th anniversary of the death of Bach, EMI's more accessible approach is this luxurious anthology of the Baroque master's sacred music. Over two and a...  more »

     
?

Larger Image
Listen to Samples

CD Details


Synopsis

Amazon.com
With various record labels compiling complete works to commemorate the 250th anniversary of the death of Bach, EMI's more accessible approach is this luxurious anthology of the Baroque master's sacred music. Over two and a half hours, this program encompasses the grand scale of the Magnificat in D (BWV 243) and Missa Brevis in A (BWV 234). Between these are scared cantatas, the very popular choral Wachet auf, ruft uns die Stimme (BWV 140) contrasting with sensitive solo vocal writing in Weinen, Klagen, Sorgen, Zagen (BWV 12); motets; arias; and an organ prelude and fugue. It's a well-balanced program, covering every aspect of Bach's church music except the Passions.The interesting booklet recounts King's College Choir's long involvement with the music of Bach, while the Academy of Ancient Music are thoroughly versed in this repertoire. The two ensembles produce a glorious sound. The soloists are of the very highest caliber, with Ian Bostridge, Michael Chance, Michael George, Susan Gritton, and Lisa Milne bringing great humanity to this incomparable music. Magnificat's uncompromising quality will satisfy the serious collector while providing a thoroughly rewarding introduction to Bach's great sacred music for a wider audience. --Gary S. Dalkin
 

CD Reviews

Bach on the Cam
Mark Swinton | 07/04/2000
(4 out of 5 stars)

"Falling in 2000, the 250th anniversary of J.S. Bach's death has given the Choir of King's College the opportunity to show how his music has come to figure increasingly in their liturgical and concert offerings. In terms of the works selected, they really have pulled out all the stops: as well as the eponymous "Magnificat," the programme includes motets, chorale arrangements, other cantatas including "Weinen, Klagen" and the ever-popular "Wachet auf!," Masses (including the rarely-performed Missa Brevis in A minor), and works for organ and orchestra. All in all, we get quite an assortment, blessed with some of the great names in early music and enhanced by the famous King's Chapel acoustics.I must admit that I have mixed feelings about this recording. As a double CD, it represents good value for money, and there is versatility aplenty in the recording: the choir gets some moments all to itself (as in "O Jesulein suss"), the organ solos are shared by organ scholar Benjamin Bayl and by Stephen Cleobury himself (one of his numbers is the arrangement of "In dulci jubilo," always heard at the end of the annual Nine Lessons and Carols Service) and perhaps the best touch of all is the use of the Academy of Ancient Music as the orchestral accompaniment, with its now legendary Baroque sound-world. Nonetheless, certain things do chafe about the recording: the soloists are good but of course the choir (itself containing some singers with excellent solo potential) has to sit and twiddle its thumbs through many of the tracks. And, whilst the AAM's presence is worthy, I feel that they went a bit over the top in including the "Air" from the third orchestral suite; yes, it is well-known, and yes, the orchestra does it justice, but did we really need it on a programme of sacred music from King's College? A further minor point is that whilst their German pronunciation is immaculate (as was their Russian when they recorded Rachmaninov's "Vespers" three years ago), I cannot help discerning the characteristically English tones of boy trebles and wondering if this tradition is too 'English' for its own good...Still, as anniversary tributes go, this is a very decent one. Certainly, it makes a good alternative to the various "Complete Bach" editions currently in progress by various record companies, in that it packs such a wonderful and varied amount of Bach's sacred music into one programme."
Excellent performance of excellent repetoire
Grady Harp | 08/22/2000
(5 out of 5 stars)

"This album is comprised of not only some of Bach's greatest works (Magnificat in D, Cantata 140--Wachet auf..., Missa brevis), but also performed by King's College Choir and... drumroll please... my favorite tenor in existence, Ian Bostridge. Listening to him sing some of the tenor solos is truly awe-inspiring. There are also some great orchestral/organ tracks on here--great for Bach enthusiasts and novices alike. While the choir may not seem entirely baroque in style (recording in King's Chapel, one of the great accoustic halls), it's the best I've heard, even topping John Eliot Gardiner (the baroque specialist). Kudos goes to Steve Cleobury for an amazing double CD. People, you won't regret buying this one. Not if you can appreciate Bach or Ian Bostridge. The two combined, ah... it is a glorious combination!"
A Generous Homage to the Choral Works of Bach
Grady Harp | Los Angeles, CA United States | 10/10/2005
(5 out of 5 stars)

"Stephen Cleobury at the helm of the Choir of Kings College Cambridge and the Academy of Ancient Music (UK) can always be depended upon to produce intelligent, sonorous recordings of ecclesiastic music in the ambience of Kings College Chapel. While some purists may not agree with his approach to the Bach masterworks, there can be no doubt that this collection of Bach's works for chorus and soloists is as generous, well balance, beautifully recorded as any on the market.

Cleobury includes not only the 'Magnificat' of the title but also four cantatas, the a cappela motets, works for organ, the 'Lutheran' Mass, and the Sanctus in C major - among others! He has carefully selected some of the finest voices as soloists - Rachel Beckett, Ian Bostridge, Michael Chance, Michael George, Susan Gritton, Micaela Comberti, and David Blackadder - for this repertoire. The sound is pure and highly enhanced by the ambience of the chapel.

For those who never tire of Bach's creative output, this recording is a must. Each of the works is given loving detail and each lingers in memory long after the reverberations of the hall wisp them away. Grady Harp, October 05"