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Charles François Gounod (1818-93)

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Gloria: Highlights of sacred choral music

Gloria: Highlights of sacred choral music


Bach, J S:

Mass in B minor, BWV232: Gloria in excelsis Deo

Concerto Köln, Peter Dijkstra

Magnificat in D major, BWV243: Gloria Patri Filio

Concerto Köln, Peter Dijkstra

St Matthew Passion, BWV244: O Haupt voll Blut und Wunden

Concerto Köln, Peter Dijkstra

St John Passion, BWV245: Herr, unser Herrscher

Concerto Köln, Peter Dijkstra

Beethoven:

Missa Solemnis in D major, Op. 123: Kyrie

Symphonieorchester des Bayerischen Rundfunks, Bernard Haitink

Dvorak:

Eja Mater (from Stabat Mater, Op. 58)

Symphonieorchester des Bayerischen Rundfunks, Mariss Jansons

Gounod:

St Cecilia Mass: Kyrie

Symphonieorchester des Bayerischen Rundfunks, Mariss Jansons

Handel:

Dixit Dominus, HWV 232: Dixit Dominus

Concerto Köln, Peter Dijkstra

Haydn:

Die Schöpfung: Die Himmel erzählen

Symphonieorchester des Bayerischen Rundfunks, Bernard Haitink

Schubert:

Mass No. 2 in G major, D167 - Gloria

Symphonieorchester des Bayerischen Rundfunks, Mariss Jansons

Verdi:

Dies Irae (from Requiem)

Symphonieorchester des Bayerischen Rundfunks, Mariss Jansons


“Chorus”, the name for a community of singers that evolved in Europe from the Middle Ages onwards, derived from the choros of Ancient Greek theatre. The first polyphony soon arose from the initially purely monophonic Latin church music, sung since Late Antiquity and collected and standardised under Pope Gregory I as Gregorian chant. The Renaissance then brought forth complex types of polyphonic a cappella works; these reached new heights during the course of the 16th century in multiple choirs, bringing new experiences in sound through the juxtaposition - whenever space allowed - of several choirs inside churches. The choir became increasingly functional – above all in operas, cantatas and oratorios. By the Late Baroque period, the development stage had been reached that still characterises today’s concept of the choir: a fixed choral ensemble, clearly differentiated from an instrumental one (the orchestra); works of primarily spiritual content; texts in Latin but, increasingly, in national languages as well; and everything gradually becoming more representational in character. The first bourgeois choral societies of the 19th century – the forerunners of today's philharmonic choirs - were ensembles of a size that could compete as well as cooperate with symphonic orchestras. In choral singing, the content - sacred and secular, nationalist and idealist, reactionary and revolutionary – could be expressed with powerful emotion, not only in separate compositions but also in choral numbers extracted from their former, broader contexts. As the 19th century progressed, combinations of popular pieces appeared that were seldom coherent in terms of their content but still sounded highly impressive (in a musical context this is not referred to as an anthology but more usually as a Florilegium), and it is these that still determine today’s concert programmes.

The Chor des Bayerischen Rundfunks can be heard here performing highlights of sacred choral music dating from the Baroque period to modern times. Even today, three hundred years later, the large oratorio choirs by Bach and Handel are as vivid, realistic and captivating as ever. Haydn succeeded in preserving this for the sacred music of the Wiener Klassik era, which reached its peak in Beethoven's Missa solemnis. The heartfelt masses composed by Schubert are typical of early German Romanticism, Gounod’s St. Cecilia Mass is the French equivalent here, and Dvořák's Stabat mater represents Bohemian Romanticism of the mid- to late 19th century. Verdi's famous Messa da Requiem testifies to the close relationship between Italian opera and Italian church music. The Mass written just before the end of World War II by the Hungarian composer Kodály is still Late Romantic in its musical language, while in his Berlin Mass, written shortly before the start of the 20th century, the Estonian composer Arvo Pärt maintains the Tintinnabuli style that informs and inspires his work.

“From Bach through Haydn and Beethoven to Verdi, the Bavarian Radio Choir, one of the best in Germany, shows great versatility in this selection of recordings marking its 70th birthday.” BBC Music Magazine, May 2017 ****

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BR Klassik - 900518

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Great Singers Live: Hermann Prey

Great Singers Live: Hermann Prey


Bach, J S:

Christmas Oratorio, BWV248: Großer Herr, o starker König

Beethoven:

An die ferne Geliebte (To the distant beloved), Op. 98

Berlin, I:

They say that falling in love is wonderful (from Annie Get Your Gun)

Gounod:

Avant de quitter ces lieux (from Faust)

Leoncavallo:

Si può? (from I Pagliacci)

Lortzing:

Wie freundlich strahlt...Heiterkeit und Fröhlichkeit (from Der Wildschütz)

Mozart:

Ein Mädchen oder Weibchen (from Die Zauberflöte)

Tutto e disposto...Aprite un po' quegl'occhi (from Le Nozze di Figaro)

Rivolgete a lui lo sguardo (from Così fan tutte)

Rossini:

Largo al factotum (from Il barbiere di Siviglia)

Verdi:

Di Provenza il mar (from La Traviata)

Alzati…Eri tu che macchiavi quell'anima (from Un Ballo in Maschera)


Arias from the legendary Sunday concerts from 1966, 1972, 1988 and 1992.

His Papageno was historic and turned Hermann Prey into the most popular opera singer in Germany. This CD contains a collection of hitherto unpublished recordings made during the legendary Sunday Concerts with the Münchner Rundfunkorchester from 1966 to 1992. In a representative series of roles ranging from Bach to musicals, the great baritone shows us all his facets: from the sensitivity of the comic actor to the intense, inmost sincerity of the Lieder performer. At a time when the opera was still an integral part of Germany's media landscape, Hermann Prey made it impressively clear that a broad repertoire and depth of interpretation are not necessarily mutually exclusive. Prey ends this CD with a performance of “They say falling in love is wonderful”, inviting us to fall in love with his art yet again.

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BR Klassik Great Singers Live - 900307

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Great Singers Live: Nicolai Ghiaurov

Great Singers Live: Nicolai Ghiaurov

Selection from two “Sunday Concerts” with the Münchner Rundfunkorchester given in 1966 and 1969.


Bizet:

Tra, La, La, Tra, La La!...Quand la flamme d'amour (from La jolie fille de Perth)

Glinka:

Ivan Susanin (A Life for the Tsar): They Guess the Truth

Sung in German

Gounod:

Le veau d'or est toujours debout (from Faust)

Vous qui faîtes l'endormie (from Faust)

Khrennikov:

Mnogo shumu? iz-za serdets (Kanzone des Bretunkenen)

Mussorgsky:

Boris Godunov: Prologue

Rachmaninov:

Ves tabor spit (from Aleko)

Sung in German

Rimsky Korsakov:

Song of the Viking Guest (from Sadko)

Sung in German

Rossini:

La calunnia è un venticello (from Il barbiere di Siviglia)

Verdi:

A te l'estremo addio ... Il lacerato spirito (from Simon Boccanegra)

Ella giammai m'amò (from Don Carlo)


Nicolai Ghiaurov’s unmistakable timbre brought him the title “Re dei bassi” – “King of Basses”. In live recordings from two Sunday Concerts by the Münchner Rundfunkorchester he can be heard in key roles from the bass repertoire as well as rarely performed arias by Bizet, Glinka and Rimsky Korsakov.

The program also contains arias from two roles in which Ghiaurov became world-famous: the title role in Boris Godunov and Mephistophèlès in Gounod’s Faust.

- Previously unreleased recordings by Nicolai Ghiaurov

- Documents of the beloved Sunday concerts with the Münchner Rundfunkorchester from the 1960’s under the direction of Georges Prêtre and Alfredo Antonini.

- The program contains key roles of the bass repertoire as well as rarely heard arias.

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BR Klassik Great Singers Live - 900304

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Mariss Jansons conducts Schubert and Gounod

Mariss Jansons conducts Schubert and Gounod

Live-Recording, Munich, Herkulessaal, 27.-29.03.2007


Gounod:

St Cecilia Mass

Schubert:

Mass No. 2 in G major, D167


These two popular 19th century orchestral masses could hardly be more different: even though there are only 40 years between Franz Schubert’s Mass No. 2 in G major D. 167 and Charles Gounod’s St. Cecilia Mass. While Schubert at the tender age of 18 wrote his mass - in a single week! - in the customary style at the time of the Missa brevis, Charles Gounod’s St. Cecilia Mass stands out by virtue of lustrous tone colors with harp and winds - reminiscent in many places of grand opéra.

The recording of the present CD took place in March of 2007 in Munich’s Herkulessaal in the Residence and reveal Mariss Jansons, the Chief Conductor of the Chor and Symphonieorchester des Bayerischen Rundfunks in an especially deeply felt program.

Schubert and Gounod: two popular 19th century orchestral masses united on one CD.

After Haydn’s Harmony Mass the second BR-KLASSIK CD with masses under the direction of Chief Conductor Mariss Jansons.

“splendidly controlled by Mariss Jansons. There is also a fine tenor solo from Christian Elsner in the 'Sanctus', and both performance and recording do well with the three soloists in 'et incarnatus', which Gounod wanted sung as quietly as possible” International Record Review, February 2012

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BR Klassik - 900114

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