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Purcell: Dido And Aeneas, Etc / Mackerras, Troyanos, Et Al

Release Date: 03/08/2005 
Label:  Archiv Produktion (Dg)   Catalog #: 4775350   Spars Code: ADD 
Composer:  Henry Purcell
Performer:  Barry McDanielMargaret Baker-GenovesiNigel RogersPatricia Johnson,   ... 
Conductor:  Sir Charles Mackerras
Orchestra/Ensemble:  North German Radio Chamber OrchestraHamburg Monteverdi ChoirEnglish Chamber Orchestra,   ... 
Number of Discs: 2 
Recorded in: Stereo 
Length: 1 Hours 58 Mins. 

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This CD is reissued by ArkivMusic.

Notes and Editorial Reviews

The gem of the set is Dido and Aeneas, featuring the sublime Tatiana Troyanos as the ill-fated Queen and led by Charles Mackerras with dramatic urgency. Troyanos' "Ah! Belinda" languishes as it should but never drags, her voice lovely, her low notes carrying alto-like depth and strength. Her touching final scene is excellent, she's as much a noble Queen as she is a bitterly disappointed lover. Sheila Armstrong is her bright-voiced Belinda, and Mackerras encourages ornamentation that was controversial in 1968 but seems overly discreet these days. The serviceable baritone Aeneas is Barry McDaniel, who sounds more the warrior than the lover, and whose timbre may surprise those accustomed to lyric tenors in the role.

Read more Dan Davis, ClassicsToday.com


A superb performance of Ode to St Cecilia’s Day.

-- Michael Tanner, BBC Music Magazine


Mackerras puts together a performance that is magnificent in its own terms. He has a formidable grasp of the music's dramatic structure. The English Chamber Orchestra are on first-rate form, with the help of John Wilbraham and Michael Laird (on modern Selmer trumpets) as well as David Munrow's recorder group; and their (unnamed) oboes and bassoon produce a wonderfully fluid sound for "Thou tun'st the world". The continuo group— which includes both Alan Haverson on the organ and Maurits Sillem in slightly aggressive form on a Goble harpsichord—is an astonishingly experienced and well-oiled ensemble. The Tiffin Choir produce a fine sound in the opening chorus: just relish those altos! And Mackerras holds back the full choral tutti of the Ambrosian Singers (I would guess about 80 of them) until "Soul of the world", where they enter in a truly stunning blaze of sound... Simon Woolf is a wonderfully expressive treble... All this is different from what we expect nowadays; but it is done with such compelling professionalism and musicianship that this recording must surely hold its place in the catalogue. Mackerras has a wonderful instinct with Purcell's lines, finding telling details at every turn.

-- Gramophone [5/1991, reviewing "Ode on St Cecilia's Day," reissued as DG 427159]
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Works on This Recording

Dido and Aeneas, Z 626 by Henry Purcell
Performer:  Barry McDaniel (Baritone), Margaret Baker-Genovesi (Soprano), Nigel Rogers (Tenor),
Patricia Johnson (Mezzo Soprano), Sheila Armstrong (Soprano), Paul Esswood (Countertenor),
Tatiana Troyanos (Mezzo Soprano), Margaret Lensky (Alto)
Conductor:  Sir Charles Mackerras
Orchestra/Ensemble:  North German Radio Chamber Orchestra,  Hamburg Monteverdi Choir
Period: Baroque 
Written: 1689; England 
Date of Recording: 09-10/1967 
Venue:  Friedrich-Ebert-Halle, Hamburg-Harburg 
Length: 63 Minutes 5 Secs. 
Language: English 
Hail, bright Cecilia, Z 328 "Ode on St Cecilia's Day" by Henry Purcell
Performer:  Simon Woolf (Boy Soprano), Paul Esswood (Countertenor), Roland Tatnell (Countertenor),
Michael Rippon (Bass), Alexander Young (Tenor), John Shirley-Quirk (Bass)
Conductor:  Sir Charles Mackerras
Orchestra/Ensemble:  English Chamber Orchestra,  Ambrosian Singers,  Tiffin Children's Choir
Period: Baroque 
Written: 1692; England 
Date of Recording: 01/1969 
Venue:  Wembley Town Hall, London, England 
Length: 55 Minutes 15 Secs. 
Language: English 

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