Sounds Sublime - The Essential Collection / Christophers, The Sixteen

Release Date: 9/8/2009
Label: Coro
Catalog Number: COR16073
Number of Discs: 2

Physical Format:

CD
Low Stock
$27.99
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 "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

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