- Israel in Egypt, oratorio, HWV 54
Handel: Israel in Egyptby Kevin Mallon
Recorded at 2008 Grand River Baroque Festival and utilizing the Aradia Ensemble -- a group consisting of an orchestra of 27 players and a choir of 28 singers -- this performance is light but powerful, and lyrical but dramatic. Kevin Mallon favors quicker tempos but still builds to immense climaxes in the concluding choirs. Though predominantly a virtuoso choral work, the oratorio is also inherently dramatic, and Mallon keeps his eye on that aspect throughout. The seven plagues of Egypt depicted in Part Two are particularly effective. And though the climaxes are immense, Mallon still gives space for the soloists drawn from the chorus to show off their talents in the airs and recitatives. Tenor Bud Roach and soprano Jennie Such are particularly effective in their pair of airs in Part Three. Mallon's performance may not rank as high as such classic recordings as the buoyant Gardiner and the monumental Cleobury. By itself, however, Mallon and the Aradia Ensemble's "Israel in Egypt" is perfectly acceptable. Naxos' live digital sound is very bright and very atmospheric, but not very vivid.
- Release Date:
Performance CreditsKevin Mallon Primary Artist
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