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Mendelssohn: Choral Music / Best, Corydon Singers, Et Al


Release Date: 05/08/2007 
Label:  Helios   Catalog #: 55268   Spars Code: DDD 
Composer:  Felix Mendelssohn
Performer:  John ScottAnne DawsonRogers Covey-Crump
Conductor:  Matthew Best
Orchestra/Ensemble:  English Chamber OrchestraCorydon Singers
Number of Discs: 1 
Recorded in: Stereo 
Length: 1 Hours 15 Mins. 

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Notes and Editorial Reviews

This disc explores Mendelssohn's choral writing in some depth, in particular his endlessly varied use of texture, the accent here being mainly on eight-part choir or double choir, with or without soloists. The singing is of an exceptionally high quality, entering deeply, without restraint, into the spirit of each piece. To take a single example, the Ave Maria, sung, satisfyingly enough by the Lisbon Choir under Corboz (Erato/WEA) sounds, by comparison, almost prosaic. Best's performance is nearer Herreweghe's (Harmonia Mundi) in spirit and understanding. Rogers Covey-Crump's ''Ave'' takes all the time it needs to develop and subside. In the second section (''Sancta Maria …'') Best adopts a really good con moto speed and the music moves Read more along resolutely, the interplay of soloists and choir perfectly balanced as they merge and emerge, gaining in intensity towards the climax, before the return of the tenor's long-sustained ''Ave''.

I was impressed by the little Kyrie for double choir, the music, naturally, but also the precision and resilience of the performance. In the miniature seasonal anthems the choir capture, as if by instinct, the mood of each—the square jollity of a German Christmas, the quiet mystery introducing the New Year, the brief note of triumph for Ascension Day, and so on.

Several other items, shared with Corboz, invite comparison. Audrey Michael's Hor mein Bitten is a lighter, more nostalgic sound than Anne Dawson's maturely beautiful performance. In the second section of Mitten wir im Leben sein, Corboz adopts a faster tempo. Best's interpretation slower and more fearful, is intensely dramatic. Some of the finest singing occurs in this piece: Best gives it tremendous strength and drive, avoiding the rather too detached style of Corboz. The former creates a marvellous antiphony between individual groups of low and high voices, with unerring control of dynamics. The tuning throughout is superb and the final cadence magical.'

-- Mary Berry, Gramophone [4/1990] Reviewing Hyperion 66359
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Works on This Recording

1. Verleih uns Frieden by Felix Mendelssohn
Performer:  John Scott (Organ)
Conductor:  Matthew Best
Orchestra/Ensemble:  English Chamber Orchestra,  Corydon Singers
Period: Romantic 
Written: 1831; Germany 
Date of Recording: 02/1989 
Venue:  St Jude-on-the-Hill, Hampstead, London 
Length: 5 Minutes 44 Secs. 
Language: German 
2. Die deutsche Liturgie: Ehre sei Gott in der Höhe by Felix Mendelssohn
Conductor:  Matthew Best
Orchestra/Ensemble:  Corydon Singers
Period: Romantic 
Written: 1846; Germany 
Date of Recording: 02/1989 
Venue:  St Jude-on-the-Hill, Hampstead, London 
Length: 4 Minutes 54 Secs. 
Language: German 
3. Sacred Pieces (3), Op. 23: no 3, Mitten wir im Leben sind by Felix Mendelssohn
Conductor:  Matthew Best
Orchestra/Ensemble:  Corydon Singers
Period: Romantic 
Written: 1830; Germany 
Date of Recording: 02/1989 
Venue:  St Jude-on-the-Hill, Hampstead, London 
Length: 8 Minutes 35 Secs. 
Language: German 
4. Heilig, heilig ist Gott, der Herr Zebaoth by Felix Mendelssohn
Conductor:  Matthew Best
Orchestra/Ensemble:  Corydon Singers
Period: Romantic 
Written: Germany 
Date of Recording: 02/1989 
Venue:  St Jude-on-the-Hill, Hampstead, London 
Length: 1 Minutes 37 Secs. 
Language: German 
5. Kyrie eleison by Felix Mendelssohn
Conductor:  Matthew Best
Orchestra/Ensemble:  Corydon Singers
Period: Romantic 
Written: Germany 
Date of Recording: 02/1989 
Venue:  St Jude-on-the-Hill, Hampstead, London 
Length: 1 Minutes 23 Secs. 
Language: Latin 
6. Sacred Pieces (3), Op. 23: no 2, Ave Maria by Felix Mendelssohn
Performer:  Anne Dawson (Soprano), John Scott (Organ), Rogers Covey-Crump (Tenor)
Conductor:  Matthew Best
Orchestra/Ensemble:  English Chamber Orchestra,  Corydon Singers
Period: Romantic 
Written: 1830; Germany 
Date of Recording: 02/1989 
Venue:  St Jude-on-the-Hill, Hampstead, London 
Length: 7 Minutes 22 Secs. 
Language: Latin 
7. Anthems (6), Op. 79 by Felix Mendelssohn
Performer:  John Scott (Organ), Anne Dawson (Soprano)
Conductor:  Matthew Best
Orchestra/Ensemble:  Corydon Singers
Period: Romantic 
Written: 1843-1846; Germany 
Date of Recording: 02/1989 
Venue:  St Jude-on-the-Hill, Hampstead, London 
Length: 11 Minutes 30 Secs. 
Language: German 
8. Psalms (3), Op. 78: no 1, Psalm 2 "Warum toben die Heiden" by Felix Mendelssohn
Performer:  Rogers Covey-Crump (Tenor), Anne Dawson (Soprano)
Conductor:  Matthew Best
Orchestra/Ensemble:  Corydon Singers
Period: Romantic 
Written: 1843; Germany 
Date of Recording: 02/1989 
Venue:  St Jude-on-the-Hill, Hampstead, London 
Length: 7 Minutes 15 Secs. 
Language: German 
9. Motets (3) for Chorus and Organ, Op. 39: no 1, Hear my prayer by Felix Mendelssohn
Performer:  John Scott (Organ), Anne Dawson (Soprano)
Conductor:  Matthew Best
Orchestra/Ensemble:  Corydon Singers
Period: Romantic 
Written: 1830/1838; Germany 
Date of Recording: 02/1989 
Venue:  St Jude-on-the-Hill, Hampstead, London 
Length: 11 Minutes 25 Secs. 
Language: German 
10. Psalms (3), Op. 78: no 2, Psalm 43 "Richte mich, Gott" by Felix Mendelssohn
Conductor:  Matthew Best
Orchestra/Ensemble:  Corydon Singers
Period: Romantic 
Written: 1844; Germany 
Date of Recording: 02/1989 
Venue:  St Jude-on-the-Hill, Hampstead, London 
Length: 3 Minutes 51 Secs. 
Language: German 
11. Psalms (3), Op. 78: no 3, Psalm 22 "Warum hast du mich verlassen" by Felix Mendelssohn
Performer:  Anne Dawson (Soprano), Rogers Covey-Crump (Tenor)
Conductor:  Matthew Best
Orchestra/Ensemble:  Corydon Singers
Period: Romantic 
Written: 1844; Germany 
Date of Recording: 02/1989 
Venue:  St Jude-on-the-Hill, Hampstead, London 
Length: 10 Minutes 17 Secs. 
Language: German 

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