This is a fantastic performance
The Music Man | United States | 01/08/2009
(5 out of 5 stars)
"There is no countenancing the rabid review of this set below - I purchased this performance of Messiah as part of a boxed set (paired with Israel In Egypt) and found the interpretation to be completely masterful. Besides the crystal clear intonation of the chorus and orchestra, the spot-on tempos (neither racing fast nor ponderously slow), there is the delicious Emma Kirkby on soprano, the pitch-perfect James Bowman as countertenor, David Thomas as an authoritative Bass, Joseph Cornwell singing a heroic, passionate tenor, and Margaret Cable's creamy, moving Alto solos. But the true heroes of this rendition of Messiah are the Taverner Choir and Players, who, under the sure direction of Andrew Parrott, play and sing as one unit. The sound is remarkably balanced and the performance clean and nuanced. This is a "historically-informed" recording, with period instruments and baroque mannerisms intact. It's lovely in every detail; and of my twenty-odd recordings of Messiah, it ranks in the top three. Essential and, at this AMAZING price, can be recommended by me as a first choice for buyers looking for a complete Messiah."