Haydn: Heiligmesse, Paukenmesse

Editorial Reviews

Barnes & Noble - EJ Johnson
{|John Eliot Gardiner|} wraps up his splendid series of Haydn's late masses with this third installment, including the "Heilig" and "Pauken" Masses. It's certainly a fitting end to the conductor's impressive trilogy, a series that Haydn enthusiasts -- or, indeed, anyone who enjoys joyous music exuberantly performed -- won't want to be without. Volumes One and Two offered the latter four in the cycle of six masses -- Haydn's last great body of work before his death in 1809 -- and, accordingly, the first two fill this disc. The "Heilig" (Holy) Mass draws its nickname from a chorale melody the composer slipped into the Sanctus, while "Pauken" (to beat a drum) is a reference ...
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Editorial Reviews

Barnes & Noble - EJ Johnson
{|John Eliot Gardiner|} wraps up his splendid series of Haydn's late masses with this third installment, including the "Heilig" and "Pauken" Masses. It's certainly a fitting end to the conductor's impressive trilogy, a series that Haydn enthusiasts -- or, indeed, anyone who enjoys joyous music exuberantly performed -- won't want to be without. Volumes One and Two offered the latter four in the cycle of six masses -- Haydn's last great body of work before his death in 1809 -- and, accordingly, the first two fill this disc. The "Heilig" (Holy) Mass draws its nickname from a chorale melody the composer slipped into the Sanctus, while "Pauken" (to beat a drum) is a reference to the Napoleonic wars that were raging during that work's composition in 1796 (its subtitle is also "Missa in tempore belli" -- Mass in Time of War -- lest anyone miss the allusion). And this martial element breaks through at several moments in the score, particularly in the rousing Agnus Dei, with its stirring writing for trumpets and timpani. Filling out the program is a brief motet, Insanae et vanae curae, a revision of part of an earlier Haydn oratorio. At great risk of redundancy, the playing and singing here could hardly be bettered. Once again, soloists, choir, and orchestra shine in music making that is as spirited as it is polished. Gardiner has already recorded Haydn's two great oratorios -- The Creation and The Seasons -- with equal success. Now, Maestro Gardiner, may we please have a Haydn opera? Armida, perhaps?
Barnes & Noble - EJ Johnson
John Eliot Gardiner wraps up his splendid series of Haydn's late masses with this third installment, including the "Heilig" and "Pauken" Masses. It's certainly a fitting end to the conductor's impressive trilogy, a series that Haydn enthusiasts -- or, indeed, anyone who enjoys joyous music exuberantly performed -- won't want to be without. Volumes One and Two offered the latter four in the cycle of six masses -- Haydn's last great body of work before his death in 1809 -- and, accordingly, the first two fill this disc. The "Heilig" Holy Mass draws its nickname from a chorale melody the composer slipped into the Sanctus, while "Pauken" to beat a drum is a reference to the Napoleonic wars that were raging during that work's composition in 1796 its subtitle is also "Missa in tempore belli" -- Mass in Time of War -- lest anyone miss the allusion. And this martial element breaks through at several moments in the score, particularly in the rousing Agnus Dei, with its stirring writing for trumpets and timpani. Filling out the program is a brief motet, Insanae et vanae curae, a revision of part of an earlier Haydn oratorio. At great risk of redundancy, the playing and singing here could hardly be bettered. Once again, soloists, choir, and orchestra shine in music making that is as spirited as it is polished. Gardiner has already recorded Haydn's two great oratorios -- The Creation and The Seasons -- with equal success. Now, Maestro Gardiner, may we please have a Haydn opera? Armida, perhaps?
All Music Guide - James Leonard
Despite his new career as a conductor of romantic and modern repertoire with the great symphony orchestras of Europe and America, John Eliot Gardiner still finds the time to make the occasional recording with the English Baroque Soloists and the Monteverdi Choir, the band and chorus he founded and with which he rose to fame in the '80s. In this 2001 recording of Haydn's "Heiligmesse" and "Missa in tempore belli," Gardiner, the English Baroque Soloists, and the Monteverdi Choir cycle of Haydn's masses began with recordings of the "Schöpfungsmesse" and "Harmoniemesse." And for those listeners who treasure this combination of performers' light textures, lively rhythms, clear articulation, and balanced interpretations, that will be all they need to know in order to ensure their purchase. For those looking for a profound and moving performance of two of Haydn's most profound and moving masses, however, these performances will be disappointing. The Monteverdi Choir sings well, but without much enthusiasm and without more than a cursory involvement with the meaning of the texts. Although one could complain about the strings' sometimes questionable intonation and the brass' tendency to squelch climaxes, the English Baroque Soloists play reasonably well, but seems to be merely going through the score one note at a time. Gardiner conducts as well as ever, that is, a great deal of energy but without a great deal of finesse, but his interpretations seem artificial and superficial. These performances are fine as far as they go, but they don't go very far.
Fanfare - Mortimer H. Frank
With this release, John Eliot Gardiner completes his superb traversal of the six mass settings that crown Haydn’s career and comprise one of the glories of Viennese Classicism.... As in the previous Gardiner releases in the series, Philips’s sound is, even by the most stringent of today’s standards, astonishing in its presence, clarity, and impact, the chorus being especially well delineated.

Despite his new career as a conductor of romantic and modern repertoire with the great symphony orchestras of Europe and America, John Eliot Gardiner still finds the time to make the occasional recording with the English Baroque Soloists and the Monteverdi Choir, the band and chorus he founded and with which he rose to fame in the '80s. In this 2001 recording of Haydn's "Heiligmesse" and "Missa in tempore belli," Gardiner, the English Baroque Soloists, and the Monteverdi Choir cycle of Haydn's masses began with recordings of the "Schöpfungsmesse" and "Harmoniemesse." And for those listeners who treasure this combination of performers' light textures, lively rhythms, clear articulation, and balanced interpretations, that will be all they need to know in order to ensure their purchase. For those looking for a profound and moving performance of two of Haydn's most profound and moving masses, however, these performances will be disappointing. The Monteverdi Choir sings well, but without much enthusiasm and without more than a cursory involvement with the meaning of the texts. Although one could complain about the strings' sometimes questionable intonation and the brass' tendency to squelch climaxes, the English Baroque Soloists play reasonably well, but seems to be merely going through the score one note at a time. Gardiner conducts as well as ever, that is, a great deal of energy but without a great deal of finesse, but his interpretations seem artificial and superficial. These performances are fine as far as they go, but they don't go very far.
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Product Details

  • Release Date: 4/2/2003
  • Label: Philips Import
  • UPC: 028947081920
  • Catalog Number: 470819
  • Sales rank: 82,201

Album Credits

Performance Credits
John Eliot Gardiner Primary Artist
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