Notes and Editorial Reviews
A very special holiday celebration from SWR Radio! The southwest of Germany is home to many professional and amateur musical talents. Children’s and youth choirs, cathedral singing schools and chamber choirs, and instrumental ensembles and orchestras can be heard singing and playing throughout the Advent and Christmas season. Whether they are already well known or yet to be discovered—whether they are rendering classical sounds or traditional tunes—there can be no doubt about the enthusiasm of these musicians! SWR Radio and hänssler CLASSIC invite you to share in the musical celebrations of this magical time of year!
J.S. BACH: Lobt Gott, ihr Christen • Sinfonia • J.S. BACH (arr. Rave): Still, a Bach Christmas • HOLST: In
the bleak midwinter • KLANGGEWITTER: Winter Wonderland • ANDERSON: Sleigh Ride • BEETHOVEN (arr. Warren): Joyful • HANDEL (arr. Bernardy): Coro di Angeli • HANDEL (arr. Lortzing): Paraphrase on Tochter Zion • MONTEVERDI: Laudate Dominum • MOZART: Minuet from String Quartet in C, K 465 • REGER: Schlaf wohl, du Himmelsknabe • Schlafe, mein Kindelein • HUMPERDINCK: Nachtlied • RUTTER: Christmas Lullaby • VALLET: Quartetto • MARTINET (arr. French Touch): Petit Papa Noël • LONQUICH: Komm, Jesus, komm • KUNZ: Time of Emotions • CHEPPONIS: Magnificat • KNAB: Pastorale • TRAD. (arr. Kahlenbach): Macht Hoch die Tür • TRAD. (arr. Dorsey & Holcombe): Angels We Have Heard on High • TRAD. (arr. Schnürl): Conditor almae siderunt
R E V I E W:
"The Musical Advent Calendar is based on the excellent idea of including an item for each day of December before Christmas. As in a real Advent Calendar the “pictures” are varied but seasonal and, as in the best Calendars, they may sometimes surprise but more often elicit a pleasant sigh of recognition. I gather that this is the most recent in a series of discs produced by South West German Radio, who broadcast individual items on the appropriate days. They showcase a wide variety of choirs and instrumentalists from the region with a strong emphasis on younger performers. As a demonstration of the pool of talent available in the region it is impressive. Maybe none of the individual performances is truly outstanding but it is good to hear that such a wide range of talented choirs, soloists and ensembles exists in the area. In the booklet the item for each day is attributed to a particular area, town or organization and presumably when they are shown on SWR Television appropriate pictures are included. It would have been good to have had something along those lines in the booklet, although it does give brief background information about the performers in German and English. Information about the music is much sparser, however. The sixth track for instance is simply described as an Allegro from a Concerto in C major by Vivaldi, leaving the listener to guess which one has been transcribed (rather well) for vibraphone and organ, and there is no indication that track nine is in fact part of Bach’s Magnificat arranged (rather ineffectually) for brass. As one of the features of an Advent Calendar can be to surprise the viewer, or in this case listener, perhaps this is no bad thing. I should also make the obvious comment that the contents of an Advent Calendar should be opened one at a time, not all at once as necessarily I have had to do. It is nonetheless enjoyable to hear as a whole even if this is not its main intention.
The contents of the disc do vary wildly in style and character. There are many charming examples of children’s choirs in a variety of music, items by very professional adult performers including the SWR Vokalensemble of Stuttgart, items by German pop artists singing Billie Holiday and Andrew Lloyd Webber idiomatically, and instrumental items. The latter include both the oddest items, such as the two I have mentioned already, and the most enjoyable, including the recorders on track 4. Overall this is a very mixed bag, obviously not intended for or suited to detached analytical listening but perhaps ideal as background for a family party. I thoroughly enjoyed it and hope that some enterprising British company will take up the idea with a similar seasonal regional collection. One other virtue of the disc is that part of the proceeds from it will be used to support aid projects for children in South West Germany."
-- John Sheppard , MusicWeb International
Works on This Recording
A Clare Benediction by John Rutter
Barbara Comes (Piano)
Hans de Gilde
Period: 20th Century
Venue: Ulm, Kloster Wiblingen
Length: 2 Minutes 50 Secs.
Let it Snow! Let it Snow! Let it Snow! by Jule Styne
Paul Carrack (Voice)
Period: 20th Century
Date of Recording: 09/2005
Venue: Theater Baden-Baden
Length: 2 Minutes 39 Secs.
Oh, Happy Day by Edwin R. Hawkins
Length: 3 Minutes 28 Secs.
Concerto in C major: Allegro by Antonio Vivaldi
Albrecht Volz (Vibraphone),
Ulrich Weissert (Organ)
Venue: Klosterkirche Alpirsbach
Length: 4 Minutes 5 Secs.
Thaïs: Meditation by Jules Massenet
Christina-Anna Tsiakiris (Violin),
Rena Tsiakiris (Piano)
Written: 1894; France
Date of Recording: 06/20/2008
Venue: SR Studio Saarbrücken
Length: 5 Minutes 1 Secs.
Ihr Kinderlein kommet, for chorus by Mathais Breitschaft
Isabelle Müller (Harp)
Date of Recording: 06/16/2009
Venue: Mainzer Dom
Length: 4 Minutes 19 Secs.
God bless the child by Billie Holiday
Sarah Lipfert (Voice)
Period: 20th Century
Written: 1941; USA
Date of Recording: 07/2008-10/2008
Length: 4 Minutes 28 Secs.
Es kommt ein Schiff geladen, carol (German) by Traditional
Date of Recording: 2008
Venue: Bingen, St. Rochuskapelle
Length: 2 Minutes 34 Secs.
Leise rieselt der Schnee, carol (German) by Traditional
Johannes Knecht (Piano)
Date of Recording: 06/16/2009
Venue: Staatstheater Stuttgart
Length: 2 Minutes 9 Secs.
Virga Jesse floruit in E minor, WAB 52 by Anton Bruckner
Written: 1885; Vienna, Austria
Venue: Saarbrücken, Basilika St. Johannes
Length: 3 Minutes 20 Secs.
Was soll das bedeuten by Traditional
Venue: Maria Rosenberg, Waldfischbach-Burgalben
Length: 2 Minutes 30 Secs.
Messiah, HWV 56: He shall feed His flock by George Frideric Handel
Thomas Hammes (Trumpet),
Christian Schmitt (Organ)
Written: 1741; England
Date of Recording: 08/2008
Length: 4 Minutes 23 Secs.
In dulci jubilo, BuxWV 52 by Dietrich Buxtehude
Anze Ganzenmüller (),
Christian Rathgeber (),
Ileana Mateescu ()
Date of Recording: 06/10/2009
Venue: Theater Mainz
Length: 3 Minutes 9 Secs.
Tu scendi dalle stelle, for 4 voices by Sant'Alfonso Maria dei Li
Petra Föhr Floreani (Piano),
Pauline Floreani (Flute)
Marshall & Alexander
Length: 2 Minutes 3 Secs.
Engel Gottes künden, for 2 voices & orchestra by Franz Xavier W. Mozart
Sebastian Hennemann (Cello),
Mirjam Eppelsheimer (Flute),
Charlotte Mengel (Violin),
Kevin Schwarz (Violin),
Adrian Nagel (Viola)
Date of Recording: 1952
Length: 4 Minutes 25 Secs.
Aria sopra, "la Bergamasca"
Oh Happy Day (arr. H. Driess): Oh Happy Day
Flute Concerto in C major, RV 443 (arr. A. Volz): Flute Concerto in C major, RV 443: I. Allegro (arr. A. Volz)
Thais (arr. for violin and piano): Thais, Act II: Meditation (arr. for violin and piano)
All-night Vigil, Op. 37, "Vespers": Hail, O Virgin Mother (Ave Maria)
Magnificat in D major, BWV 243: Esurientes (arr. for brass ensemble)
God Bless the Child (arr. P. Herbolzheimer)
Es kommt ein Schiff geladen (arr. M. Hofmann)
Jesus Christ Superstar: I Don't Know How to Love Him
Hansel and Gretel: Abendsegen
Virga jesse floruit, WAB 52
Elijah, Op. 70: Trio: Hebe deine Augen auf zu den Bergen
Messiah, HWV 56 (arr. for trumpet and organ): Messiah, HWV 56: Er weidet seine Herde (arr. for trumpet and organ)
The 4 Seasons: Violin Concerto in F minor, Op. 8, No. 4, RV 297, "L'inverno" (Winter): II. Largo
In dulci jubilo, BuxWV 52
Tu scendi dalle stelle (arr. K. Schnurl)
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