Essential Handel

Essential Handel

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EMI's Essential Handel is a double-disc compilation of 38 tracks drawn from recordings that date between 1964 and 2007. This time period overlaps the analog and digital eras, so listeners should expect the usual variability of reproduction that's common to surveys of this nature. However, EMI provides a reasonable balance of volume and clear sound throughout,

Overview

EMI's Essential Handel is a double-disc compilation of 38 tracks drawn from recordings that date between 1964 and 2007. This time period overlaps the analog and digital eras, so listeners should expect the usual variability of reproduction that's common to surveys of this nature. However, EMI provides a reasonable balance of volume and clear sound throughout, so playback is trouble-free. Perhaps more important to appreciating Handel's music is the mix of performance styles, which run between historically informed practice (i.e., the music is played on authentic instruments in a manner appropriate to Baroque methods) and more conventional modern playing, which was the norm prior to the dawn of the early music movement. Tastes in Baroque and Classical music have changed considerably since the 1960s, so most of the later recordings in this package reflect the adoption of the best scholarship and tend to sound streamlined in texture, more generously ornamented, and fairly brisk in tempo. However, there are a few heavy-textured arrangements here, such as the orchestrated version of the "Sarabande in D minor for harpsichord" (featured prominently in the film Barry Lyndon), and the spurious arrangement of the "Suite in D major for trumpet," taken from "Water Music," which is another misleading selection that should have been omitted. All told, though, this is a fairly good introduction to Handel's music, and with a little further research into the byways of Handel's works, it will serve the beginner well.

Product Details

Release Date:
08/24/2010
Label:
Warner Classics
UPC:
5099962791526
catalogNumber:
27915

Tracks

  1. Music for the Royal Fireworks, for orchestra, HWV 351
  2. Messiah, oratorio, HWV 56: Why do the nations?
  3. Organ Concerto in B flat, Op.7/3, HWV 308: 1. Allegro
  4. Alcina, opera, HWV 34: Verdi prati
  5. Dixit Dominus, hymn for soloists, chorus & orchestra in G minor, HWV 232
  6. Concerto Grosso in G minor, Op.6/6, HWV 324: 2. Musette (Larghetto)
  7. Judas Maccabaeus, oratorio, HWV 63: See, the Conqu'ring Hero Comes!
  8. Semele, oratorio, HWV 58: Wher'er you walk
  9. Saul, oratorio, HWV 53: Dead March
  10. Messiah, oratorio, HWV 56: I know that my Redeemer liveth
  11. Organ Concerto in G minor, Op.4/1, HWV 289: 1. Largo e staccato
  12. Zadok the Priest, coronation anthem No. 1 for chorus & orchestra, HWV 258
  13. Messiah, oratorio, HWV 56: Hallelujah
  14. Oboe Concerto in B flat major (No.2a), HWV 301 (possibly spurious): 2. Siciliana
  15. Harp Concerto in B flat major, Op.4/6, HWV 294: 1. Andante allegro
  16. Solomon, oratorio, HWV 67: From the censer curling rise
  17. Suite for keyboard (Suite de piece), Vol.1, No.5 in E major ("The Harmonious Blacksmith"), HWV 430: 4. Air con variazioni "The Harmonious Blacksmith"
  18. Concerto Grosso in C major "Alexander's Feast" HWV 318: 1. Allegro
  19. Messiah, oratorio, HWV 56: For unto us a child is born
  20. Water Music Suite No.3 for orchestra in G major, HWV 350: Menuet
  21. Water Music Suite No.3 for orchestra in G major, HWV 350: Rigaudon
  22. Messiah, oratorio, HWV 56: Ev'ry valley shall be exalted
  23. Water Music Suite No.2 for orchestra in D major, HWV 349: Hornpipe
  24. Samson, oratorio, HWV 57: Let the bright seraphim - Let their celestial conc
  25. Water Piece, suite for trumpet, strings & continuo in D major (spurious arrangement), HWV 341
  26. Air (Sarabande) in E major, HWV 425
  27. Organ Concerto in F major "Cuckoo & the Nightingale" (No.13), HWV 295: 2. Allegro
  28. Water Music Suite No.1 for orchestra in F major, HWV 348: Menuet
  29. Water Music Suite No.1 for orchestra in F major, HWV 348: Air
  30. Serse (Xerxes), opera, HWV 40: Frondi tenere... Ombra mai fù
  31. Solomon, oratorio, HWV 67: Arrival of the Queen of Sheba

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