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Sounds Sublime - The Essential Collection / Christophers, The Sixteen


Release Date: 09/08/2009 
Label:  Coro   Catalog #: 16073   Spars Code: n/a 
Composer:  Johann Sebastian BachTomás Luis de VictoriaWolfgang Amadeus MozartDomenico Scarlatti,   ... 
Performer:  Libby CrabtreeChristopher GlynnGary CooperLynda Russell,   ... 
Conductor:  Harry Christophers
Orchestra/Ensemble:  The SixteenAcademy of St. Martin in the FieldsBBC Philharmonic Orchestra
Number of Discs: 2 
Recorded in: Stereo 
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Notes and Editorial Reviews

Highlights from some of the most celebrated recordings from Harry Christophers and his award-winning ensemble. Equally appealing to fans of The Sixteen and those who are new to the group, this disc provides a definitive collection of familiar classics and lesser-known treasures.

R E V I E W:

British choir the Sixteen is billed as being among "the Voices of Classic FM," the impressively successful British independent classical radio network. This mixed-gender adult group of (natch) 16 voices performs music ranging from the early English Renaissance to Mozart and, on occasion, the Romantics. An objection to their style might be that they tend to sound similar in all these repertories. This double-CD
Read more "essential collection" tends to reinforce that idea, but it also showcases the group's considerable strengths. To put it briefly, the Sixteen makes early music go down easy and does so without turning it completely into something different. The vocal surfaces are gorgeous, and each album contains a note by director Harry Christophers that touches on connections between the music's origins and its resonances in our own time. They sweat the details and that has never been more apparent than in this greatest-hits release. Most of the time such albums are left to label underlings and produced without imagination, but this one is beautifully packaged and has a full new set of notes concisely explaining the album's fresh concept. That concept is well thought-out; the album is not just a random selection of tracks somehow judged to be the best of the Sixteen, whose music-making is nothing if not consistent. Instead, each piece chosen is associated with a specific historical event, many of them significant junctures in British history. You couldn't ask for a better place to start in approaching unfamiliar music than to get a basic grip on its context in this way and then have it very attractively performed. The remastering is very strong; there's little sense of shifting sonic perspective even though the originals are drawn from a wide variety of this prolific group's releases. All this makes the album a fine introduction to one of modern Britain's most successful vocal groups.

-- All Music Guide

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Works on This Recording

1.
Magnificat in D major, BWV 243: Magnificat by Johann Sebastian Bach
Conductor:  Harry Christophers
Orchestra/Ensemble:  The Sixteen
Period: Baroque 
Written: circa 1728-1731; Leipzig, Germany 
Length: 2 Minutes 55 Secs. 
2.
Ave Maria, gratia plena à 8 by Tomás Luis de Victoria
Conductor:  Harry Christophers
Orchestra/Ensemble:  The Sixteen
Period: Renaissance 
Written: by 1572; Italy 
Length: 4 Minutes 3 Secs. 
3.
Ave verum corpus in D major, K 618 by Wolfgang Amadeus Mozart
Conductor:  Harry Christophers
Orchestra/Ensemble:  Academy of St. Martin in the Fields,  The Sixteen
Period: Classical 
Written: 1791; Austria 
Length: 2 Minutes 54 Secs. 
4.
Iste confessor by Domenico Scarlatti
Performer:  Libby Crabtree (Soprano)
Conductor:  Harry Christophers
Orchestra/Ensemble:  The Sixteen
Period: Baroque 
Written: circa 1715; Rome, Italy 
Length: 3 Minutes 23 Secs. 
5.
Spem in alium by Thomas Tallis
Conductor:  Harry Christophers
Orchestra/Ensemble:  The Sixteen
Period: Renaissance 
Written: after 1559; England 
Length: 9 Minutes 35 Secs. 
6.
Man that is born of a woman, Z 27 by Henry Purcell
Conductor:  Harry Christophers
Orchestra/Ensemble:  The Sixteen
Period: Baroque 
Written: circa 1680-1682; England 
Length: 2 Minutes 43 Secs. 
7.
Thou know'st, Lord, the secrets of our hearts, Z 58c by Henry Purcell
Conductor:  Harry Christophers
Orchestra/Ensemble:  The Sixteen
Period: Baroque 
Written: 1695; England 
Length: 2 Minutes 1 Secs. 
8.
Coronation Anthems (4): no 1, HWV 258 "Zadok the priest" by George Frideric Handel
Conductor:  Harry Christophers
Orchestra/Ensemble:  The Sixteen
Period: Baroque 
Written: 1727; London, England 
Length: 5 Minutes 43 Secs. 
9.
German Requiem, Op. 45: Wie lieblich sind deine Wohnungen by Johannes Brahms
Performer:  Christopher Glynn (Piano), Gary Cooper (Piano)
Conductor:  Harry Christophers
Orchestra/Ensemble:  The Sixteen
Period: Romantic 
Written: 1854-1868; Austria 
Length: 6 Minutes 32 Secs. 
10.
Crucifixus a 8 by Antonio Lotti
Conductor:  Harry Christophers
Orchestra/Ensemble:  The Sixteen
Period: Baroque 
Written: Italy 
Length: 3 Minutes 14 Secs. 
11.
Hymns (2) to the Mother of God: no 1, Hymn to the Mother of God by John Tavener
Conductor:  Harry Christophers
Orchestra/Ensemble:  The Sixteen
Period: Contemporary 
Written: 1985; United Kingdom 
Length: 3 Minutes 18 Secs. 
12.
Te gloriosus Apostolorum (from Te Deum) by Antonio Teixeira
Performer:  Lynda Russell (Soprano)
Conductor:  Harry Christophers
Orchestra/Ensemble:  The Sixteen
Period: Baroque 
Length: 5 Minutes 18 Secs. 
13.
The Lark: Spring Song by Leonard Bernstein
Conductor:  Harry Christophers
Orchestra/Ensemble:  The Sixteen
Period: 20th Century 
Written: 1955; USA 
Length: 1 Minutes 54 Secs. 
14.
La voix du bien-aimé (from Le Cantique des Cantiques) by Jean Yves Daniel-Lesur
Conductor:  Harry Christophers
Orchestra/Ensemble:  The Sixteen
Period: 20th Century 
Length: 3 Minutes 49 Secs. 
15.
Requiem, Op. 48: Pie Jesu by Gabriel Fauré
Performer:  Elin Manahan Thomas (Soprano)
Conductor:  Harry Christophers
Orchestra/Ensemble:  Academy of St. Martin in the Fields,  The Sixteen
Period: Romantic 
Written: 1888 rev 1893; France 
Length: 3 Minutes 23 Secs. 
16.
Répons (7) des ténèbres: Una hora by Francis Poulenc
Conductor:  Harry Christophers
Orchestra/Ensemble:  BBC Philharmonic Orchestra,  The Sixteen
Length: 3 Minutes 27 Secs. 
17.
Hymn of St Columba by Benjamin Britten
Conductor:  Harry Christophers
Orchestra/Ensemble:  The Sixteen
Period: 20th Century 
Written: 1962; England 
Length: 1 Minutes 59 Secs. 
18.
Israel in Egypt, HWV 54: Moses and the children of Israel by George Frideric Handel
Conductor:  Harry Christophers
Orchestra/Ensemble:  The Sixteen
Period: Baroque 
Written: by 1739; London, England 
Length: 0 Minutes 57 Secs. 
19.
Israel in Egypt, HWV 54: I will sing unto the Lord by George Frideric Handel
Performer:  Nicola Jenkin (Soprano)
Conductor:  Harry Christophers
Orchestra/Ensemble:  The Sixteen
Length: 2 Minutes 41 Secs. 
20.
Mass in B minor, BWV 232: Quoniam tu solus sanctus by Johann Sebastian Bach
Performer:  Michael George (Bass), Roger Montgomery (Horns)
Conductor:  Harry Christophers
Orchestra/Ensemble:  The Sixteen
Period: Baroque 
Written: 1747-1749; Leipzig, Germany 
Length: 4 Minutes 30 Secs. 
21.
Mass in B minor, BWV 232: Cum sancto spiritu by Johann Sebastian Bach
Conductor:  Harry Christophers
Orchestra/Ensemble:  The Sixteen
Period: Baroque 
Written: 1747-1749; Leipzig, Germany 
Length: 3 Minutes 50 Secs. 
22.
Solomon, HWV 67: Arrival of the Queen of Sheba by George Frideric Handel
Conductor:  Harry Christophers
Orchestra/Ensemble:  The Sixteen
Period: Baroque 
Written: by 1749; London, England 
Length: 3 Minutes 3 Secs. 
23.
Vesperae solennes de confessore, K 339: Laudate Dominum by Wolfgang Amadeus Mozart
Conductor:  Harry Christophers
Orchestra/Ensemble:  Academy of St. Martin in the Fields,  The Sixteen
Period: Classical 
Written: 1780; Salzburg, Austria 
Length: 3 Minutes 59 Secs. 
24.
Miserere mei Deus: Miserere mei by Gregorio Allegri
Performer:  Ruth Dean (Soprano), Christopher Purves (Bass), Sally Dunkley (Soprano)
Conductor:  Harry Christophers
Orchestra/Ensemble:  The Sixteen
Period: Baroque 
Written: 17th Century; Italy 
Length: 12 Minutes 11 Secs. 
25.
Missa "Papae Marcelli": Kyrie by Giovanni Palestrina
Conductor:  Harry Christophers
Orchestra/Ensemble:  The Sixteen
Period: Renaissance 
Written: by 1567; Italy 
Length: 3 Minutes 59 Secs. 
26.
Deus in adiutorium by Juan Gutierrez de Padilla
Conductor:  Harry Christophers
Orchestra/Ensemble:  The Sixteen
Period: Baroque 
Written: Mexico 
Length: 2 Minutes 8 Secs. 
27.
O Domine Jesu Christe by Tomás Luis de Victoria
Conductor:  Harry Christophers
Orchestra/Ensemble:  The Sixteen
Period: Renaissance 
Length: 3 Minutes 36 Secs. 
28.
Libera nos by John Sheppard
Conductor:  Harry Christophers
Orchestra/Ensemble:  The Sixteen
Period: Renaissance 
Written: 16th Century; England 
Length: 3 Minutes 22 Secs. 
29.
Mass for Double Chorus: Agnus Dei by Frank Martin
Conductor:  Harry Christophers
Orchestra/Ensemble:  The Sixteen
Period: 20th Century 
Written: 1922-1926; Switzerland 
Length: 5 Minutes 41 Secs. 
30.
The Lamb "Little Lamb, who made thee?" by John Tavener
Conductor:  Harry Christophers
Orchestra/Ensemble:  The Sixteen
Period: 20th Century 
Written: 1982; England 
Length: 3 Minutes 35 Secs. 
31.
Missa "Pro defunctis": Versa est in luctum by Tomás Luis de Victoria
Conductor:  Harry Christophers
Orchestra/Ensemble:  The Sixteen
Period: Renaissance 
Written: by 1583; Italy 
Length: 4 Minutes 3 Secs. 
32.
Agnus Dei, Op. 11 by Samuel Barber
Performer:  Ruth Dean (Soprano)
Conductor:  Harry Christophers
Orchestra/Ensemble:  The Sixteen
Period: 20th Century 
Written: 1967; USA 
Length: 8 Minutes 25 Secs. 
Notes: This work is a vocal arrangement of the composer's 'Adagio for Strings.' 
33.
Advance Democracy by Benjamin Britten
Conductor:  Harry Christophers
Orchestra/Ensemble:  The Sixteen
Period: 20th Century 
Written: 1938; England 
Length: 3 Minutes 17 Secs. 
34.
Messiah, HWV 56: Hallelujah! by George Frideric Handel
Conductor:  Harry Christophers
Orchestra/Ensemble:  The Sixteen
Period: Baroque 
Written: 1742; London, England 
Length: 3 Minutes 52 Secs. 
35.
Herz und Mund und Tat und Leben, BWV 147: Herz und Mund... by Johann Sebastian Bach
Conductor:  Harry Christophers
Orchestra/Ensemble:  The Sixteen
Period: Baroque 
Written: 1723; Leipzig, Germany 
Length: 2 Minutes 42 Secs. 
36.
Gloria in D major, RV 589: Gloria in excelsis Deo by Antonio Vivaldi
Conductor:  Harry Christophers
Orchestra/Ensemble:  The Sixteen
Period: Baroque 
Written: Venice, Italy 
Length: 2 Minutes 26 Secs. 
37.
Nun ist das Heil und die Kraft, BWV 50 [fragment] by Johann Sebastian Bach
Conductor:  Harry Christophers
Orchestra/Ensemble:  The Sixteen
Period: Baroque 
Written: ?1723; ?Leipzig, Germany 
Length: 3 Minutes 43 Secs. 
38.
Samson, HWV 57: Let the bright Seraphim by George Frideric Handel
Performer:  Lynne Dawson (Soprano), Crispian Steele-Perkins (Trumpet)
Conductor:  Harry Christophers
Orchestra/Ensemble:  The Sixteen
Period: Baroque 
Written: by 1743; London, England 
Length: 6 Minutes 29 Secs. 

Featured Sound Samples

Ave Maria à 8 (Victoria)
Israel in Egypt (Handel): "I will sing unto the Lord"

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