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Sullivan: The Prodigal Son, Etc /Corp, Rutter, Denley, Et Al

Release Date: 01/13/2004 
Label:  Hyperion   Catalog #: 67423   Spars Code: DDD 
Composer:  Arthur Sullivan
Performer:  Catherine DenleyClaire RutterMark WildeGarry Magee
Conductor:  Ronald Corp
Orchestra/Ensemble:  New London OrchestraLondon Chorus
Number of Discs: 1 
Recorded in: Stereo 
Length: 1 Hours 15 Mins. 

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Notes and Editorial Reviews

No, don't groan. Arthur Sullivan was too good a composer to allow himself to get bogged down in dreary oratorio-isms, responding instead to what after all is a good story with possibilities for some effective character sketches of the father and his wayward child. There are some lovely arias for both of them, and they are very well sung by tenor Mark Wilde and baritone Garry Magee with affecting simplicity and not a trace of "sacred music" sanctimoniousness. The two women also sing well, though they understandably have much less to do. Even at the young age of 27, Sullivan's scoring has uncommon freshness and accuracy, particularly his writing for winds, and there's a marvelous "Revel" chorus accompanied throughout by Read more snare drum that texturally speaking recalls early Verdi, though the scoring for piccolo and contrabassoon is pure Sullivan. At almost exactly an hour in length, The Prodigal Son deserves to return to the repertoire of choral societies everywhere. It's a charmer.

Sullivan's Boer War Te Deum was his last completed work, and he never lived to hear it as he died in 1900 and the war didn't end until 18 months later in 1902. So this work, written to celebrate the outbreak of peace, had to wait for its premiere. Aside from the fact that it contains Sullivan's most famous tune ("Onward Christian Soldiers"), it's a solemn and dignified setting admirably suited to the occasion, and Ronald Corp & Co. capture its gravity and dignity very well indeed. Here and in The Prodigal Son the big climaxes with brass and organ tend to swamp the chorus, but there's no doubt that this release is every bit as recommendable as The Golden Legend, continuing to round out the picture of England's finest 19th-century composer. Issues of balance between the very good chorus and orchestra notwithstanding, the recorded sound as such is splendidly realistic and rich. Give me this over Elijah any day! [2/19/2004]
--David Hurwitz, ClassicsToday.com Read less

Works on This Recording

The Prodigal Son by Arthur Sullivan
Performer:  Catherine Denley (Mezzo Soprano), Claire Rutter (Soprano), Mark Wilde (Tenor),
Garry Magee (Baritone)
Conductor:  Ronald Corp
Orchestra/Ensemble:  New London Orchestra,  London Chorus
Period: Romantic 
Written: by 1869; England 
Te Deum by Arthur Sullivan
Performer:  Catherine Denley (Mezzo Soprano), Mark Wilde (Tenor), Claire Rutter (Soprano),
Garry Magee (Baritone)
Conductor:  Ronald Corp
Orchestra/Ensemble:  New London Orchestra,  London Chorus
Period: Romantic 
Written: 1872; England 

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