The Baroque Christmas AlbumProduct DescriptionDGG 4775762; DEUTSCHE GRAMMOPHON - Germania; Classica OrchestraleAmazon.comThis compilation of re-issues, originally recorded in the 1990s and 2001 features music, by Bach, Charpentier, Gabrieli, Sch�tz, Corelli (the famous beloved "Pastorale") and Praetorius, all of it beautiful and just right for celebrating a festival of light, hope, worshipful praise, and jubilation. It is performed to perfection by several period vocal and instrumental groups, the latter tuned to various "authentic" pitches. Some of the pieces are excerpts from longer works, some are arrangements, such as four lovely French Christmas carols in an instrumental version by Charpentier, whose harmonic and contrapuntal complexity makes the simplicity of the melodies all the more touching. There are also two reconstructions by Paul McCreesh of Christmas services as they might have been heard during Gabrieli's lifetime at Saint Mark's in Venice and during Sch�tz's lifetime at the Dresden Hofkapelle. The program is arranged for utmost contrast between vocal and instrumental textures, speed, length, mood and character. Among the highlights are the devout, fervent, quite melancholy "O Jesu me dulcissime" by Gabrieli, who wrote for voices with the same luminous brilliance as for brasses, and Praetorius' "In dulce jubilo," which, with fanfares of trumpets and drums, makes a fittingly triumphant, glorious ending.--Edith Eisler
Features of The Baroque Christmas Album VARIOS INTERPRETES MUSIcA cLASIcA INTERNATIONAL MUSIc
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