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Handel: Sacred Cantatas

Editorial Reviews

Barnes & Noble - EJ Johnson
Handel may be most renowned for his oratorios in English, but before settling in England, where local tastes compelled him to write works in English, the composer lived and wrote in Italy for several years. This lovely disc presents some of the fruits of his Italian sojourn: a set of sacred cantatas scored for solo soprano, a pair of violins, and continuo. Soloist Emma Kirkby is in particularly fine form here, giving expressive voice to Handel's music at its most Italianate. In the opening "Salve Regina," Handel makes the most of the sparse instrumentation, imaginatively using the continuo in a melodic role in the middle Allegro, while omitting it for brief, dramatic ...
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Editorial Reviews

Barnes & Noble - EJ Johnson
Handel may be most renowned for his oratorios in English, but before settling in England, where local tastes compelled him to write works in English, the composer lived and wrote in Italy for several years. This lovely disc presents some of the fruits of his Italian sojourn: a set of sacred cantatas scored for solo soprano, a pair of violins, and continuo. Soloist Emma Kirkby is in particularly fine form here, giving expressive voice to Handel's music at its most Italianate. In the opening "Salve Regina," Handel makes the most of the sparse instrumentation, imaginatively using the continuo in a melodic role in the middle Allegro, while omitting it for brief, dramatic moments in the final Adagissimo. The "O quails de coelo sonus" is a wonderfully cheerful setting of a Pentecostal text, ending with a gleeful "Alleluja" in 6/8 time, and the "Coelestis dum spirat aura," written for St. Anthony's Day, follows in its footsteps with precisely the same six-movement format. The final "Laudate Pueri" is a more youthful work; its eight-movement scheme is more extended, and there are moments of great virtuosity for the soprano soloist, nimbly negotiated by Kirkby's agile, bright voice. A G Minor Trio Sonata fills the balance of the program, performed with consummate style by the marvelous London Baroque chamber ensemble.
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Product Details

  • Release Date: 5/22/2001
  • Label: Bis
  • EAN: 7318590010655
  • Catalog Number: 1065
  • Sales rank: 165,719

Tracks

Disc 1
  1. 1–3 Salve Regina, antiphon for soprano, strings, organ & continuo in G minor, HWV 241 - George Frideric Handel & Emma Kirkby (10:52)
  2. 4–9 O qualis de coelo sonus, motet for soprano, HWV 239 - George Frideric Handel & Emma Kirkby (11:26)
  3. 10–13 Oboe Sonata in G minor, HWV 404 - George Frideric Handel & Arlette Lemieux-ChenĂ© (10:28)
  4. 14–19 Coelestis dum spirat aura, motet for soprano, 2 violins & continuo, HWV 231 - George Frideric Handel & Emma Kirkby (12:02)
  5. 20–27 Laudate Pueri Dominum, psalm, for soprano, 2 violins & continuo in F, HWV 236 - George Frideric Handel & Emma Kirkby (22:15)
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Album Credits

Performance Credits
Emma Kirkby Primary Artist
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