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Joseph Haydn: Die Jahreszeiten

Haydn / Wilson-johnson / Persson / Bolton
Release Date: 08/02/2005 
Label:  Oehms   Catalog #: 905   Spars Code: DDD 
Composer:  Franz Joseph Haydn
Performer:  David Wilson-JohnsonMiah PerssonJohn Mark Ainsley
Conductor:  Ivor Bolton
Number of Discs: 2 
Length: 2 Hours 8 Mins. 

CD not available: This title is currently only available as an MP3 download.  

Notes and Editorial Reviews





I?ve always been glad I don?t normally review Beethoven?s Fifth Symphony: what more is there to say about it? Well, Haydn?s two late oratorios seem to be appearing on disc as often as the ubiquitous op. 67 these days, even though their catalog totals have a long way to go to catch up. Furthermore, performances on disc seem to be getting better and better. Which is the good news/bad news about this Haydn raid on Mozart?s home turf. The Salzburg performance is a fine one, so good that it might have been a top recommendation two decades ago, but several superior ones have appeared in the meantime, notably that led by René Jacobs on Harmonia Mundi ( Read more style="font-style:italic">Fanfare 28:3).


The quality of this performance, or of its performers, is never in doubt. The Mozarteum Orchestra?once a chamber group but now a full-strength symphony orchestra?plays with a reduced string complement that still leaves it larger than the period-instrument ensembles that tackle this grand work. The playing is accurate, strong, and in tune. It features a glorious solo oboe, as sweet and colorful as one could wish, that provides the perfect foil for Hanne?s aria ?Welche Labung für die Sinne!? (CD 1, track 17). The three soloists are excellent, applying tasteful and well-executed ornamentations, but no one of them leaves a memorable impression. The large chorus makes a potent contribution, but its words are not always intelligible; some of that is due to the otherwise excellent recorded sound, in which the chorus sometimes recedes into the background.


For better or for worse, this performance is consistently serious. There is little joy, few high spirits. Tempos too are consistent, generally slower than today?s norm. I am surprised to find that the total timing exceeds the Jacobs recording by a mere two minutes. As is often the case, overall timings do not tell the whole story?one slightly slower Adagio can counterbalance a raft of quicker Prestos. The impression remains that this performance is staid when compared to Jacobs. Even ?Autumn??s final chorus, as fast and as bracing as it is here, has a weighty feeling. Only when the people celebrate resurrection after death at the end of ?Winter? does a mighty shout of joy burst forth. Appropriate as this may be from a religious standpoint, it is too late in the day to make the most of Haydn?s oratorio.


The side-by-side German/English libretto is not keyed to the performance: you will have to write in disc and track numbers yourself, which is easy to do, as the double jewel case?s back paper contains a complete track listing?tied to the score?s section numbers?as well as the opening words of each aria, ensemble, and chorus. It is ironic that the Achilles heel of the Jacobs performance is a honky oboe, which is this recording?s finest moment.


FANFARE: James H. North
Read less

Works on This Recording

1. The Seasons, H 21 no 3 by Franz Joseph Haydn
Performer:  David Wilson-Johnson (), Miah Persson (), John Mark Ainsley ()
Conductor:  Ivor Bolton
Period: Classical 
Written: 1799-1801; Vienna, Austria 
Venue:  Großer Saal, Mozarteum Salzburg 
Length: 95 Minutes 11 Secs. 

Sound Samples

Die Jahreszeiten (The Seasons), Hob.XXI:3: Der Fruhling (Spring): Introduction and Recitative: Seht, wie der strenge Winter (Simon, Lukas, Hanne)
Die Jahreszeiten (The Seasons), Hob.XXI:3: Der Fruhling (Spring): Komm, holder Lenz! (Chorus)
Die Jahreszeiten (The Seasons), Hob.XXI:3: Der Fruhling (Spring): Recitative: Vom Widder strahlet jetzt (Simon)
Die Jahreszeiten (The Seasons), Hob.XXI:3: Der Fruhling (Spring): Aria: Schon eilet froh der Ackersmann (Simon)
Die Jahreszeiten (The Seasons), Hob.XXI:3: Der Fruhling (Spring): Recitative: Der Landmann hat sein Werk vollbracht (Lukas)
Die Jahreszeiten (The Seasons), Hob.XXI:3: Der Fruhling (Spring): Trio: Sei nun gnadig, milder Himmel! (Lukas, Simon, Hanne, Chorus)
Die Jahreszeiten (The Seasons), Hob.XXI:3: Der Fruhling (Spring): Recitative: Erhort ist unser Flehn (Hanne)
Die Jahreszeiten (The Seasons), Hob.XXI:3: Der Fruhling (Spring): Trio: Song of Joy: O wie lieblich ist der Anblick (Hanne, Lukas, Simon, Chorus)
Die Jahreszeiten (The Seasons), Hob.XXI:3: Der Fruhling (Spring): Ewiger, machtiger, gutiger Gott! (Chorus, Hanne, Lukas, Simon)
Die Jahreszeiten (The Seasons), Hob.XXI:3: Der Sommer (Summer): Recitative: In grauem Schleier ruckt heran (Lukas, Simon)
Die Jahreszeiten (The Seasons), Hob.XXI:3: Der Sommer (Summer): Aria: Der munt're Hirt versammelt nun (Simon) - Recitative: Die Morgenrote bricht hervor (Hanne)
Die Jahreszeiten (The Seasons), Hob.XXI:3: Der Sommer (Summer): Trio: Sie steigt herauf, die Sonne (Hanne, Lukas, Simon, Chorus)
Die Jahreszeiten (The Seasons), Hob.XXI:3: Der Sommer (Summer): Recitative: Nun regt und bewegt sich alles umher (Simon)
Die Jahreszeiten (The Seasons), Hob.XXI:3: Der Sommer (Summer): Recitative: Die Mittagssonne brennet jetzt (Lukas)
Die Jahreszeiten (The Seasons), Hob.XXI:3: Der Sommer (Summer): Cavatina: Dem Druck' erlieget die Natur (Lukas)
Die Jahreszeiten (The Seasons), Hob.XXI:3: Der Sommer (Summer): Recitative: Willkommen jetzt, o dunkler Hain (Hanne)
Die Jahreszeiten (The Seasons), Hob.XXI:3: Der Sommer (Summer): Aria: Welche Labung fur die Sinne (Hanne)
Die Jahreszeiten (The Seasons), Hob.XXI:3: Der Sommer (Summer): Recitative: O seht, es steiget in der schwulen Luft (Simon, Lukas, Hanne)
Die Jahreszeiten (The Seasons), Hob.XXI:3: Der Sommer (Summer): Ach! das Ungewitter naht (Chorus)
Die Jahreszeiten (The Seasons), Hob.XXI:3: Der Sommer (Summer): Trio: Die dustren Wolken trennen sich (Lukas, Hanne, Simon, Chorus)
Die Jahreszeiten (The Seasons), Hob.XXI:3: Der Herbst (Autumn): Introduction
Die Jahreszeiten (The Seasons), Hob.XXI:3: Der Herbst (Autumn): Recitative: Was durch seine Blute der Lenz (Hanne)
Die Jahreszeiten (The Seasons), Hob.XXI:3: Der Herbst (Autumn): Trio: So lohnet die Natur den Fleiss (Simon, Hanne, Lukas, Chorus)
Die Jahreszeiten (The Seasons), Hob.XXI:3: Der Herbst (Autumn): Recitative: Seht, wie zum Haselbusche dort (Hanne, Simon, Lukas)
Die Jahreszeiten (The Seasons), Hob.XXI:3: Der Herbst (Autumn): Duet: Ihr Schonen aus der Stadt, kommt her (Lukas, Hanne)
Die Jahreszeiten (The Seasons), Hob.XXI:3: Der Herbst (Autumn): Recitative: Nun zeiget das entblosste Feld (Simon)
Die Jahreszeiten (The Seasons), Hob.XXI:3: Der Herbst (Autumn): Aria: Seht auf die breiten Wiesen hin (Simon)
Die Jahreszeiten (The Seasons), Hob.XXI:3: Der Herbst (Autumn): Recitative: Hier treibt ein dichter Kreis (Lukas)
Die Jahreszeiten (The Seasons), Hob.XXI:3: Der Herbst (Autumn): Chorus of Countrymen and Hunters: Hort das laute Geton (Chorus)
Die Jahreszeiten (The Seasons), Hob.XXI:3: Der Herbst (Autumn): Recitative: Am Rebenstocke blinket jetzt (Hanne)
Die Jahreszeiten (The Seasons), Hob.XXI:3: Der Herbst (Autumn): Juhe, juhe! Der Wein ist da (Chorus)
Die Jahreszeiten (The Seasons), Hob.XXI:3: Der Winter (Winter): Introduction: Die Einleitung schildert die dicken Nebel
Die Jahreszeiten (The Seasons), Hob.XXI:3: Der Winter (Winter): Recitative: Nun senket sich (Simon, Hanne)
Die Jahreszeiten (The Seasons), Hob.XXI:3: Der Winter (Winter): Cavatina: Licht und Leben sind geschwachet (Hanne)
Die Jahreszeiten (The Seasons), Hob.XXI:3: Der Winter (Winter): Recitative: Gefesselt steht der breite See (Lukas)
Die Jahreszeiten (The Seasons), Hob.XXI:3: Der Winter (Winter): Aria: Hier steht der Wand'rer nun (Lukas)
Die Jahreszeiten (The Seasons), Hob.XXI:3: Der Winter (Winter): Recitative: So wie er naht (Tenor, Soprano, Bass)
Die Jahreszeiten (The Seasons), Hob.XXI:3: Der Winter (Winter): Song with Chorus: Knurre, schnurre, knurre (Hanne, Chorus)
Die Jahreszeiten (The Seasons), Hob.XXI:3: Der Winter (Winter): Recitative: Abgesponnen ist der Flachs (Lukas)
Die Jahreszeiten (The Seasons), Hob.XXI:3: Der Winter (Winter): Song with Chorus: Ein Madchen, das auf Ehre (Hanne, Chorus)
Die Jahreszeiten (The Seasons), Hob.XXI:3: Der Winter (Winter): Recitative: Vom durren Osten dringt (Simon)
Die Jahreszeiten (The Seasons), Hob.XXI:3: Der Winter (Winter): Aria: Erblicke hier, betorter Mensch (Simon)
Die Jahreszeiten (The Seasons), Hob.XXI:3: Der Winter (Winter): Recitative: Die bleibt allein (Simon)
Die Jahreszeiten (The Seasons), Hob.XXI:3: Der Winter (Winter): Trio and Double Chorus: Dann bricht der grosse Morgen an (Simon, Lukas, Hanne, Chorus)

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