John Christopher Smith: Tobit - Oratorio after Handel

Editorial Reviews

All Music Guide - James Manheim
The big "Handel" at the top of the front cover may occasion confusion in the mind of the listener who can't remember any Handel oratorio called "Tobit" or Tobias. That's because the work is a pastiche of Handel's music, fitted with new words and arranged into a facsimile of a coherent story drawn from the Book of Tobias in the Bible. The creator was John Christopher Smith, the son of a German copyist and longtime associate of Handel born Johann Christoph Schmidt who anglicized his name when he went to work for Handel in London. The tunes are drawn from a variety of lesser Handel oratorios none is from "Messiah" or "Judas Maccabeus", with recitatives written by Smith ...
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Editorial Reviews

All Music Guide - James Manheim
The big "Handel" at the top of the front cover may occasion confusion in the mind of the listener who can't remember any Handel oratorio called "Tobit" or Tobias. That's because the work is a pastiche of Handel's music, fitted with new words and arranged into a facsimile of a coherent story drawn from the Book of Tobias in the Bible. The creator was John Christopher Smith, the son of a German copyist and longtime associate of Handel born Johann Christoph Schmidt who anglicized his name when he went to work for Handel in London. The tunes are drawn from a variety of lesser Handel oratorios none is from "Messiah" or "Judas Maccabeus", with recitatives written by Smith himself and various holes filled in with new music by the conductor of the present recording, Joachim Carlos Martini. The Junge Kantorei shows itself to be one of the profusion of regional German choirs with a startlingly warm sound and well-honed ensemble, and the Frankfurt Baroque Orchestra is smooth and ingratiating. The singers, especially tenor Knut Schoch as Tobit, betray little in the way of non-English accents and have a fine mastery of the bright, public Handelian oratorio style. The only fly in the ointment is the work itself, which is certainly of interest to those fascinated by the question of how Handel got from King George to your local bunch of Christian teens who put synthesized beats to "Messiah" every Christmas. But the work is a footnote to Handel, not Handel undiluted. "It will be seen," writes annotator Keith Anderson, "that the oratorio expects some previous knowledge of the story, as a number of elements in the original narrative are omitted." Which is another way of saying that this large work doesn't really hang together. Texts are available on the Naxos website, and the singers involved offer decent intelligibility.
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Product Details

  • Release Date: 2/27/2007
  • Label: Naxos
  • UPC: 747313011377
  • Catalog Number: 8570113
  • Sales rank: 305,581

Tracks

Disc 1
  1. 1–66 Tobit, oratorio (after Handel) - John Christopher Smith & Alison Browner (155:45)
    Composed byJohn Christopher Smith
    Conducted byJoachim Carlos Martini
    Performed byAlison Browner, Barbara Hannigan, Junge Kantorei, Stephan MacLeod, Joachim Carlos Martini, Linda Perillo, Frankfurt Baroque Orchestra, Knut Schoch, Maya Boog
    1. 1Ouverture
    2. 2Part 1. Scene 1. Recitative. Happy Assyria
    3. 3Part 1. Scene 1. Chorus. Hear us, O Baal
    4. 4Part 1. Scene 2. Recitative. How Soon Eclips'd is human joy
    5. 5Part 1. Scene 2. Solo & Chorus. O Lord, whom we adore / Hear from thy mercies seat
    6. 6Part 1. Scene 3. Recitative. The Lord hath heard my pray'r
    7. 7Part 1. Scene 3. Air. Will God, whose mercies ever flow
    8. 8Part 1. Scene 3. Recitative. But Say, my Rightous Lord
    9. 9Part 1. Scene 3. Duet. To Steal a Grave
    10. 10Part 1. Scene 3. Recitative. Your Pardon
    11. 11Part 1. Scene 3. Air. Boistrous Winds and Billows rolling
    12. 12Part 1. Scene 3. Chorus. Tyrants may a while presume
    13. 13Part 1. Scene 4. Sinfonia
    14. 14Part 1. Scene 4. Accompagnato. Ah, Wretched Sarah!
    15. 15Part 1. Scene 4. Air. Paid be my Adoration
    16. 16Part 1. Scene 4. Recitative. Be comforted, My Daughter
    17. 17Part 1. Scene 4. Air. The Lord Sends his Thunders
    18. 18Part 1. Scene 4. Chorus. All Pow'r in Heav'n above or Earth beneath
    19. 19Part 2. Scene 1. Sinfonia
    20. 20Part 2. Scene 1. Accompagnato. Alas! To what Variety of Ills
    21. 21Part 2. Scene 1. Air. Happy in thee, my Son
    22. 22Part 2. Scene 2. Recitative. Happy in thee, my Son
    23. 23Part 2. Scene 2. Air. Descend, kind Pity
    24. 24Part 2. Scene 2. Chorus. Impartial heav'n
    25. 25Part 2. Scene 3. Recitative. If Blindness Scorn, Contempt and Misery
    26. 26Part 2. Scene 3. Chorus. O Baal, Monarch of the Skies!
    27. 27Part 2. Scene 3. Ritornello
    28. 28Part 2. Scene 4. Recitative. Pain'd as I am
    29. 29Part 2. Scene 4. Air. Thy pleasing Face
    30. 30Part 2. Scene 4. Recitative. O thou bright sun!
    31. 31Part 2. Scene 4. Air. With darkness Deep, as is my woe
    32. 32Part 2. Scene 5. Sinfonia
    33. 33Part 2. Scene 5. Recitative. What caution is too great
    34. 34Part 2. Scene 5. Air. Thou, God most high
    35. 35Part 2. Scene 5. Duet. Cease thy Anguish
    36. 36Part 2. Scene 5. Chorus. The Clouded Scene begins to clear
    37. 37Part 2. Scene 6. Sinfonia
    38. 38Part 2. Scene 6. Recitative. How happy, Daughter
    39. 39Part 2. Scene 6. Air. To nobler Joys aspiring
    40. 40Part 2. Scene 7. Recitative. O Azarias, I must freely own
    41. 41Part 2. Scene 8. Recitative. The grateful Tribute of our thanks
    42. 42Part 2. Scene 8. Air. Let Songs of varied measure
    43. 43Part 2. Scene 8. Chorus. Now Love, that everlasting Joy
    44. 44Part 2. Scene 8. Chorus. Happy, happy shall they be
    45. 45Part 3. Scene 1. Sinfonia
    46. 46Part 3. Scene 1. Accompagnato. Still am I persecuted
    47. 47Part 3. Scene 1. Air. Cease your Pride, deluded mortals
    48. 48Part 3. Scene 1. Chorus. Tremble, Guilt, for Thou Shalt find
    49. 49Part 3. Scene 2. Sinfonia
    50. 50Part 3. Scene 2. Recitative. Hail, Tobit!
    51. 51Part 3. Scene 2. Accompagnato. Henceforth through all the changing Scenes of Life
    52. 52Part 3. Scene 2. Air. My Son, how happy in this thy Sweet Return
    53. 53Part 3. Scene 2. Chorus. Let none Despair
    54. 54Part 3. Scene 3. Accompagnato and Recitative. Blest be the God of Heav'n
    55. 55Part 3. Scene 3. Air. May true Joy
    56. 56Part 3. Scene 3. Terzetto. More chearfull appearing
    57. 57Part 3. Scene 3. Air. Watchful angels
    58. 58Part 3. Scene 3. Recitative. O King of Kings
    59. 59Part 3. Scene 3. Air. Allelujah
    60. 60Part 3. Scene 3. Chorus. Swift our numbers
    61. 61Part 3. Scene 3. Recitative. 'Tis well
    62. 62Part 3. Scene 3. Accompagnato. O Nineveh!
    63. 63Part 3. Scene 3. Air. In Jehovah's awful sight
    64. 64Part 3. Scene 3. Symphony
    65. 65Part 3. Scene 3. Recitative. Saw ye the radiant Streams of Light
    66. 66Part 3. Scene 3. Chorus and Solo. Ye servants of th' eternal King
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Album Credits

Performance Credits
Joachim Carlos Martini Primary Artist
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