Handel: Messiah

( 1 )

Editorial Reviews

All Music Guide - Blair Sanderson
Many early music performers strive to re-create the style and expressions of a certain period, working within a consensus of opinions on what constitutes authentic performance practice. But some go quite a bit further and reproduce a work with all the known details of instrumentation and the specific features of a historic performance. Not only have Edward Higginbottom and the excellent Academy of Ancient Music reconstructed the well-documented 1751 version of George Frideric Handel's "Messiah," but they have performed it with the superb New College Choir, Oxford, gifted virtuoso vocalists such as tenor Toby Spence and bass Eamon Dougan, along with trebles Henry ...
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Editorial Reviews

All Music Guide - Blair Sanderson
Many early music performers strive to re-create the style and expressions of a certain period, working within a consensus of opinions on what constitutes authentic performance practice. But some go quite a bit further and reproduce a work with all the known details of instrumentation and the specific features of a historic performance. Not only have Edward Higginbottom and the excellent Academy of Ancient Music reconstructed the well-documented 1751 version of George Frideric Handel's "Messiah," but they have performed it with the superb New College Choir, Oxford, gifted virtuoso vocalists such as tenor Toby Spence and bass Eamon Dougan, along with trebles Henry Jenkinson, Otta Jones, Robert Brooks, and countertenor Iestyn Davies, following Handel's employment of men and boys in his London performances. As much as anyone can make the "Messiah" sound authentic, like a living, breathing, organic work of the eighteenth century -- played on original instruments with the highest musicality, and with all the refinements of Baroque embellishment and improvisation -- Higginbottom and his skillful musicians make this overly familiar oratorio seem utterly revived with their fresh sounding timbres and the choir's lighter voices; and they deliver it with the vitality, passion, beauty, and excitement that might make one forget, if not exactly forgive, what the stodgy Victorians and their pious ilk did to this vibrant masterpiece. Considering the vast array of historically informed recordings available, listeners in search of a great version can rest assured that this is one of the absolute best, and be grateful that Naxos has given this project such lavish production values and its finest engineering. This exquisite presentation of "Messiah" is recommended as one of the finest recordings of 2006.
Gramophone - David Vickers
At best, Higginbottom's choir produces some marvelous moments.... Higginbottom's direction does not boil with dramatic intensity but instead simmers along with patience, elegant judgement and articulate tastefulness.
BBC Music Magazine - Nicholas Anderson
The bright, continental sound of the boys’ voices in the New College recording is, to my ears, irresistible.... The choruses "All we like sheep," "Worthy is the Lamb" and the Amen are scintillating from start to finish.

The bright, continental sound of the boys’ voices in the New College recording is, to my ears, irresistible.... The choruses "All we like sheep," "Worthy is the Lamb" and the Amen are scintillating from start to finish.
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Product Details

  • Release Date: 10/31/2006
  • Label: Naxos
  • UPC: 747313013173
  • Catalog Number: 8570131
  • Sales rank: 210,798

Tracks

Disc 1
  1. 1–52 Messiah, oratorio, HWV 56 - George Frideric Handel & Academy of Ancient Music (141:52)
    Composed byGeorge Frideric Handel
    Conducted byEdward Higginbottom
    Performed byAcademy of Ancient Music, Choir of New College, Oxford, Edward Higginbottom, Toby Spence, Eamonn Dougan, Iestyn Davies
    1. 1Part 1. Sinfonia
    2. 2Part 1. Accompanied recitative. Comfort ye, my people
    3. 3Part 1. Aria. Every valley shall be exalted
    4. 4Part 1. Chorus. And the glory of the Lord
    5. 5Part 1. Accompanied recitative. Thus saith the Lord of Hosts
    6. 6Part 1. Aria. But who may abide the day of His coming
    7. 7Part 1. Chorus. And He shall purify
    8. 8Part 1. Recitative. Behold, a virgin shall conceive, and bear a son
    9. 9Part 1. Aria and Chorus. O thou that tellest good tidings to Zion
    10. 10Part 1. Accompanied recitative. For behold, darkness shall cover the earth
    11. 11Part 1. Aria. The people that walked in darkness
    12. 12Part 1. Chorus. For unto us a Child is born
    13. 13Part 1. Pifa
    14. 14Part 1. Accompanied recitative. There were shepherds abiding in the field
    15. 15Part 1. Chorus. Glory to God in the highest
    16. 16Part 1. Aria. Rejoice greatly, O daughter of Zion
    17. 17Part 1. Recitative. Then shall the eyes of the blind be opened
    18. 18Part 1. Aria. He shall feed His flock like a shepherd
    19. 19Part 1. Chorus. His yoke is easy, His burthen is light
    20. 20Part 2. Chorus. Behold, the Lamb of God
    21. 21Part 2. Aria. He was despised and rejected of men
    22. 22Part 2. Chorus. Surely He hath borne our griefs and carried our sorrows
    23. 23Part 2. Chorus. And with His stripes we are healed
    24. 24Part 2. Chorus. All we like sheep have gone astray
    25. 25Part 2. Accompanied recitative. All they that see Him, laugh Him to scorn
    26. 26Part 2. Chorus. He trusted in God that He would deliver Him
    27. 27Part 2. Accompanied recitative. Thy rebuke hath broken His heart
    28. 28Part 2. Aria. Behold, and see if there be any sorrow like unto His sorrow
    29. 29Part 2. Accompanied recitative. He was cut off out of the land of the living
    30. 30Part 2. Aria. But thou didst not leave His soul in hell
    31. 31Part 2. Chorus. Lift up your heads, O ye gates
    32. 32Part 2. Recitative. Unto which of the angels said He at any time
    33. 33Part 2. Chorus. Let all the angels of God worship Him
    34. 34Part 2. Aria. Thou art gone up on high
    35. 35Part 2. Chorus. The Lord gave the word
    36. 36Part 2. Aria. How beautiful are the feet of them that preach the gospel of peace
    37. 37Part 2. Chorus. Their sound is gone out into all lands
    38. 38Part 2. Aria. Why do the nations so furiously rage together
    39. 39Part 2. Chorus. Let us break their bonds asunder
    40. 40Part 2. Recitative. He that dwelleth in heaven shall laugh them to scorn
    41. 41Part 2. Aria. Thou shalt break them with a rod of iron
    42. 42Part 2. Chorus. Hallelujah
    43. 43Part 3. Aria. I know that my redeemer liveth
    44. 44Part 3. Chorus. Since by man came death
    45. 45Part 3. Accompanied recitative. Behold, I tell you a mystery
    46. 46Part 3. Aria. The trumpet shall sound
    47. 47Part 3. Recitative. Then shall be brought to pass the saying that is written
    48. 48Part 3. Duet. O death, where is thy sting
    49. 49Part 3. Chorus. But thanks be to God
    50. 50Part 3. Aria. If God is for us, who can be against us
    51. 51Part 3. Chorus. Worthy is the Lamb that was slain
    52. 52Part 3. Chorus. Amen
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Album Credits

Performance Credits
Edward Higginbottom Primary Artist
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Customer Reviews

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Sort by: Showing 1 Customer Reviews
  • Anonymous

    Posted October 1, 2010

    Too overprized

    I have red several rave reviews of this basic work about this particular performance and I don`t understand what is so great about this recording. I just listened to the 2nd Cd (in my opinion, the most difficult part of the work to work out, for the performers, because in non-capable hands it can lead to boredom)and for me it was clear it is not a great one. Ok Ok Ok there is nothing really wrong here. That is why I put 3 stars and not 1. Here there are no excentricities (Listen to the Alleluya by Jacobs and you will find them right from the start. Lesson of the day: avoid a recording when a conductor wants to attrack attention on himself rather than the work). But ... the idea of boy singers to sing arias is wrong: never, never a boy can handle the phrasing and ornamentation an adult female can make. And I can`t stand "light" baritones in Messiah: the work needs a truly resonant basso (such as Tomlinson). Ornamentation in arias is not always present in 2nd Cd for ex trumpet shall sound (wrong !!!). And some tempi are plodding. The Alleluya is just right, nothing really new and vivid. In short, a correct, cheap Messiah. Recommended for short budgets and fans of collegiate choirs

    0 out of 1 people found this review helpful.

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