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Vivaldi: Gloria; Bach: Magnificat / Boston Baroque

Release Date: 01/24/2006 
Label:  Telarc   Catalog #: 60651   Spars Code: n/a 
Composer:  Antonio VivaldiJohann Sebastian Bach
Performer:  Tamara Crout MatthewsDeanne MeekMary PhillipsDon Frazure,   ... 
Conductor:  Martin Pearlman
Orchestra/Ensemble:  Boston Baroque
Number of Discs: 1 
Recorded in: Multi 
Length: 0 Hours 53 Mins. 

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Notes and Editorial Reviews

This is a hybrid Super Audio CD playable on both regular and Super Audio CD players.

Martin Pearlman does particularly well here by Vivaldi's Gloria, which is lively and thoroughly enjoyable. The two sopranos, Tamara Matthews and Deanne Meek, both here and in the Bach, sing very well whether singly or together (i.e., Laudamus te). Alto Mary Phillips has a bit of trouble keeping her English-oratorio-style voice steady in slower music (Domine Deus; Agnus Dei), but she perks up nicely for Qui sedes ad dexteram Patris. The chorus sings with plenty of enthusiasm and good diction, demonstrating the necessary contrapuntal clarity in the Propter magnam fugue and the concluding Cum Sancto Spiritu. While the orchestra plays very
Read more confidently, Pearlman makes the violins attack their dotted rhythms in Domine Fili unigenite so violently that they sound as though they're having a seizure. However, the alternation between harpsichord and organ continuo is very intelligently handled.

The Bach is a bit less successful on the whole, despite sharing many of the same virtues as the Vivaldi. In particular, the trumpets have some intonation problems in the opening chorus whenever their music becomes especially florid, and this mitigates some of the music's innate excitement despite excellent work from the massed voices. Baritone Stephen Powell has a big, virile sound for Quia fecit mihi magna, but all of tenor Don Frazure's heroic bluster in Deposuit potentes can't hide his blurred passagework. Tempos are consistently fast: Pearlman's aggressiveness makes the work sound just a bit too relentless, though nothing here falls below good international standards. So you can do better in the Bach, though not perhaps with respect to the engineering, which is excellent--very tactile and bold--in both stereo and multichannel formats. In sum, this is enjoyable, but not quite ideal.

--David Hurwitz, ClassicsToday.com
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Works on This Recording

Gloria by Antonio Vivaldi
Performer:  Tamara Crout Matthews (Soprano), Deanne Meek (Mezzo Soprano), Mary Phillips (Alto)
Conductor:  Martin Pearlman
Orchestra/Ensemble:  Boston Baroque
Period: Baroque 
Written: Venice, Italy 
Magnificat in D major, BWV 243 by Johann Sebastian Bach
Performer:  Mary Phillips (Alto), Don Frazure (Tenor), Stephen Powell (Baritone),
Tamara Crout Matthews (Soprano), Deanne Meek (Mezzo Soprano)
Conductor:  Martin Pearlman
Orchestra/Ensemble:  Boston Baroque
Period: Baroque 
Written: circa 1728-1731; Leipzig, Germany 

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