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Bach: Christmas Oratorio / Pickett, Bott, King, Et Al

Release Date: 10/10/2000 
Label:  Decca   Catalog #: 458838   Spars Code: DDD 
Composer:  Johann Sebastian Bach
Performer:  Catherine BottPaul AgnewAndrew KingMichael Chance,   ... 
Conductor:  Philip Pickett
Orchestra/Ensemble:  New London Consort
Number of Discs: 2 
Recorded in: Stereo 
Length: 2 Hours 27 Mins. 

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Notes and Editorial Reviews

The recommending word for Philip Pickett and the New London Consort's recording of J. S. Bach's Christmas Oratorio is balance. There is a most satisfying balance on every level of this recording-between singers, between singers and instrumentalists, and between instrumentalists. Pickett mediates between the extreme options for choral forces-one per part at one extreme and a mammoth Romantic-sized choir at the other-by placing several singers on each choral part and drawing his soloists from that choir. Listening to the chorales and chorus movements of Bach's monumental creation will reveal the wisdom of Pickett's decision.
The chorales are presented in a very unfussy manner, and the effect is much more moving than the typically
Read more foursquare and highbrow approach to this congregational music. Pickett also racks up points with his choice of singers. The expressive declamation and liquid tenor of Paul Agnew make for a compelling Evangelist. And Michael Chance's lilting countertenor, which is entrusted with the bulk of the solo movements, does wonderful justice to the long-breathed and enchanting cradle song, "Schlafe, mein Liebster, geniesse der Ruh," which, clocking in as the longest movement, is in many ways the expressive core of the oratorio. Read less

Works on This Recording

Christmas Oratorio, BWV 248 by Johann Sebastian Bach
Performer:  Catherine Bott (Soprano), Paul Agnew (Tenor), Andrew King (Tenor),
Michael Chance (Countertenor), Michael George (Bass)
Conductor:  Philip Pickett
Orchestra/Ensemble:  New London Consort
Period: Baroque 
Written: 1734-1735; Leipzig, Germany 
Date of Recording: 04/05/1997 
Venue:  Walthamstow Assembly Hall, UK 
Length: 146 Minutes 42 Secs. 
Language: German 
Notes: Composition written: Leipzig, Germany (1734 - 1735). 

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