Brahms: Choral Music

Brahms: Choral Music

5.0 1
by Antoni Wit
     
 

This collection of short choral pieces by Johannes Brahms is an unusual one in present times, partly because many of the choral parts are quite demanding. For a choral club in the 19th century, however, it wouldn't have been so novel, and there are great beauties on offer here. After the fetching "Ave Maria, Op. 12," the rest of the program is dense, metaphysical, and… See more details below

Overview

This collection of short choral pieces by Johannes Brahms is an unusual one in present times, partly because many of the choral parts are quite demanding. For a choral club in the 19th century, however, it wouldn't have been so novel, and there are great beauties on offer here. After the fetching "Ave Maria, Op. 12," the rest of the program is dense, metaphysical, and, with the partial exception of the "Alto Rhapsody, Op. 53," concerned with death. There are two funeral songs, and two more about fate, and this is not the warm, humanistic Brahms of the "German Requiem, Op. 45." The performances are profound and dignified, and the overall effect uncanny. The Warsaw Philharmonic Choir under choirmaster Henryk Wojnarowski has a gorgeous rich tone that is undiminished by the long lines of the music, and the "Alto Rhapsody" achieves real grandeur in the hands of contralto Ewa Wolak. But the real credit goes to the Warsaw Philharmonic and conductor Antoni Wit, who keep a consistent level of tension and momentum in difficult, dark material like the somber "Nänie, Op. 82" (Funeral Song), a rarely performed late Brahms masterwork. This isn't an album you'd choose for a garden party, but Naxos appears to have struck hold with these Polish musicians in its long period of experimentation with Eastern European ensembles. The engineering, accomplished in Warsaw Philharmonic Hall on a series of dates in early 2010, makes the lines of this intricate music perfectly clear.

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Product Details

Release Date:
01/31/2012
Label:
Naxos
UPC:
0747313269471
catalogNumber:
8572694
Rank:
155817

Related Subjects

Tracks

  1. Hyperions Schicksalslied (Song of Destiny) for chorus and orchestra, Op. 54  - Johannes Brahms  - Friedrich Holderlin  -  Warsaw Philharmonic Orchestra  - Antoni Wit  - Henryk Wojnarowski  -  Warsaw Philharmonic Chorus  -  Keith Anderson
  2. Alto Rhapsody, for alto, male chorus & orchestra, Op. 53  - Johannes Brahms  - Johann Wolfgang von Goethe  -  Warsaw Philharmonic Orchestra  - Antoni Wit  - Henryk Wojnarowski  -  Warsaw Philharmonic Chorus  - Ewa Wolak  -  Keith Anderson
  3. Begräbnisgesang ("Nun lasst uns den Leib"), for 5-voice chorus, winds & timpani ("Funeral Hymn"), Op. 13  - Johannes Brahms  -  Warsaw Philharmonic Orchestra  - Michael Weiße  - Antoni Wit  - Henryk Wojnarowski  -  Warsaw Philharmonic Chorus  -  Keith Anderson
  4. Ave Maria, for female chorus & keyboard (or orchestra) in F major, Op. 12  - Johannes Brahms  -  Warsaw Philharmonic Orchestra  - Antoni Wit  - Henryk Wojnarowski  -  Warsaw Philharmonic Chorus  -  Keith Anderson
  5. Gesang der Parzen ("Es fürchte die Götter"), for chorus & orchestra ("Song of the fates"), Op. 89  - Johannes Brahms  - Johann Wolfgang von Goethe  -  Warsaw Philharmonic Orchestra  - Antoni Wit  - Henryk Wojnarowski  -  Warsaw Philharmonic Chorus  -  Keith Anderson
  6. Nänie ("Auch das Schöne muss sterben"), for chorus, orchestra & harp ad lib, Op. 82  - Johannes Brahms  - Friedrich von Schiller  -  Warsaw Philharmonic Orchestra  - Antoni Wit  - Henryk Wojnarowski  -  Warsaw Philharmonic Chorus  -  Keith Anderson

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Album Credits

Performance Credits

Antoni Wit   Primary Artist

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