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Bach: Mass in B Minor / Mortensen, Concerto Copenhagen

Bach,J.s. / Keohane / Concerto Copenhagen
Release Date: 01/08/2016 
Label:  Cpo   Catalog #: 777851   Spars Code: DDD 
Composer:  Johann Sebastian Bach
Performer:  Christopher WatsonJakob Bloch JespersenPeter HarveyJan Kobow,   ... 
Conductor:  Lars Ulrik Mortensen
Number of Discs: 2 
Recorded in: Mixed 
Length: 1 Hours 43 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.


Concerto Copenhagen and Lars Ulrik Mortensen adopt the minimalist one-voice-per-part approach to the choir: 10 expert voices have been chosen shrewdly, with five ‘concertino’ singers (the soloists) reinforced in choruses by an additional five ‘ripieni’ voices.

To my mind, Mortensen’s special performance, full to the brim with insightful musicianship and a refreshing avoidance of contrived formulas, comfortably joins Parrott, Junghänel and John Butt as the finest examples of this kind of perspective on performing Bach’s monumental
Read more sacred masterpiece.

Maria Keohane and Joanne Lunn combine to beguiling effect in an understated ‘Christe eleison’, and the latter sings ‘Laudamus te’ radiantly in partnership with Fredrik From’s sophisticated violin obbligato playing. The musical conversation between oboist Antonie Torunczyk and countertenor Alex Potter in ‘Qui sedes’ ebbs and flows sweetly. Peter Harvey’s ‘Quoniam’ has dignified gravitas (and tasteful horn-playing by Ursula Paludan Monberg), and Jan Kobow sings poignantly in partnership with flautist Katy Bircher in the Benedictus.

The individual components are routinely marvelous, but Concerto Copenhagen produce something much more than the sum of its parts: one of the most profoundly captivating interpretations to have emerged recently.

– Gramophone Read less

Works on This Recording

Mass in B minor, BWV 232 by Johann Sebastian Bach
Performer:  Christopher Watson (Tenor), Jakob Bloch Jespersen (Bass), Peter Harvey (Baritone),
Jan Kobow (Tenor), Else Torp (Soprano), Hanna Kappelin (Soprano),
Maria Keohare (Soprano), Joanne Lunn (Mezzo Soprano)
Conductor:  Lars Ulrik Mortensen
Period: Baroque 
Written: 1747-49; Leipzig, Germany 
Venue:  Garnisons Kirke, Copenhagen 
Length: 97 Minutes 57 Secs. 

Customer Reviews

Average Customer Review:  1 Customer Review )
 Supreme example of one approach to Baroque Perfor October 28, 2016 By Robert Marcus (Santa Fe, NM) See All My Reviews "More than a decade ago Joshua Rifkin and others began to perform baroque choral music with a minimalist approach...one or two singers per part rather than a full chorus. The singers were mostly wonderful, beautiful of voice and fine with diction. The trade-off was a lack of power that could be supplied only by large numbers. I think there has been less interest in this approach in recent years. The current release of the Mass in B minor constitutes in my mind the best of the minimalist approach. The performance is very impressive, both vocally and instrumentally. It has been a great pleasure to listen and re-listen to it. Each time I hear it I am awe-struck at what a magnificent achievement the B minor mass is, which I suppose is the desired effect. Particularly effective in my view were the small movements, sections that one never hears when attending a mass in Church. My only quibble overall, though, remains the lack of power. To me, both the opening of the Kyrie and particularly the Sanctus were relatively anemic. Also, the vocal qualities of the Soloists vs the Chorus were very similar so that the contrast one gets when hearing soloists trade off with a chorus was lacking. There is no such thing as a definitive performance of this work. But the exquisite performance of Mortenson et als deserves an honored place in any music library." Report Abuse
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