An excellent performance
M. J. Smith | Seattle, WA USA | 09/18/2000
(4 out of 5 stars)
"This cd is the Baroque equivalent of the Medieval and Renaissance Christmas albums of the Boston Camerata. It has the least varied repetoire, in part because of the Charpentier Mass - Messe de Minuit sur des Airs de Noel, a work well worth having in its entirety. There are two pieces that are chant and a marvelous piece from Germany in an Italian style - Nun Jauchzet mit Hellem Ton - to which the notes say there are two sets of words, the one recorded here in praise of the Christmas festival, the other celebrating the amorous delights of nymphs. With such a delightful piece of trivia, how could the cd fail?While the Boston Camerata gives its normal skilled performance, they are not as spectacular as they are on earlier music. They still are among the better interpreters of Baroque music, but it is not their speciality.This is an excellent Christmas cd worthy of being in any collection."
A warm, joyful baroque Christmas celebration
Michael | Washington, D.C. area | 12/07/2004
(5 out of 5 stars)
"The beautiful, varied, and well-chosen repertoire on this disc will keep you returning to it season after season. We start with a 17th-cantury French NOEL, lovingly and simply rendered a cappella by Richard Duguay. There follow some more French carols in instrumental arrangements by Marc-Antoine Charpentier, two traditional plainchants, some sumptuous madrigal-style pieces by Schein and Monteverdi, Purcell's florid and expressive vocal monologue for the Virgin Mary, and finally the most substantial piece on the disc: Charpentier's Christmas Midnight Mass, a very interesting work based on French carol themes. The performances by the Boston camerata are warm and vibrant. This early baroque Christmas disc is a real winner."