This is a handsome publication of Italian and German Christmas music from the Chemnitz Baroque Orchestra. Only five years old, the Chemnitz Baroque Orchestra is joined by Dresden based soprano Jana Büchner in a finely tuned program of Baroque Christmas and quasi-Christmas music by Telemann, Corelli and Alessandro Scarlatti plus German Baroque chorales for Christmas. Oboist Ekkehard Hering performs and directs a coherent progression of historic works in succinct interpretations. Mr. Hering is also a longtime member of the Akademie für Alte Musik Berlin.
Telemann's Concerto in B flat major, the famous Corelli Concerto Grosso in G minor, Opus 6 No. 8 (Christmas Concerto) and Alessandro Scarlatti's delightful QuartettoRead more in F major, form the purely instrumental part of this exceptional Christmas record. The energetic and lyrical playing makes for a lasting pleasure. The phrasing, tempo and dynamic sophisticated are rich and finely tuned. Historic or replica instruments are not used and the ensemble avoids a dry, rigid, straight tone and ailing pneumatics. Instead they offer rich, yet transparent sound and richly phrased contours. If your room begins to vibrate, then the ideal interpretation is created. Your attention is focused on the beauty to the extent that nothing else happens in this gloriously vivid recording by the Chemnitz musicians.
The vocal contributions by Jana Büchner are especially ennobling. The award-winning soprano, an expert on Mozart’s operas, brings a pithy clarity and timbre resulting in the necessary charisma for this Christmas repertoire. Listen to the vocally demanding Scarlatti 'Cantate per la pastorale Birth of Nostri Signore', which shines with Büchner’s appealing timbre. Or 'O sweet little Jesus' the German chorale by Johann Cruger' which cheerfully goes straight to the heart and there is Bach's 'I stand here at your crib.' Clearly oriented to the vocal line and still one of symbiotic unity with the orchestra, drawing you into this repertoire again and again. Highly recommended.
- Erik Daumann,
Klassik.com, (Translated from German) 2011 Read less