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Concertos - Released November 8, 2011 | harmonia mundi

Hi-Res Booklet Distinctions Choc de Classica - Hi-Res Audio
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Concertos - Released March 25, 2013 | harmonia mundi

Hi-Res Booklet Distinctions 5 de Diapason - Hi-Res Audio
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Chamber Music - Released February 9, 2018 | harmonia mundi

Hi-Res Booklet Distinctions 5 étoiles de Classica
It was for the occasion of the Covent Garden premiere of his oratorio Joshua in 1748, that Handel composed – or rather arranged – the first of his three Concerti a due cori (« Cori » does not mean here a vocal group, but two instrumental groups – two oboes, two horns, and one bassoon each, a total of ten soloists – answering to each other on the playing grounds provided by the strings), namely the HWV 332. At that time, it was customary to lighten up performances of the largest compositions, especially oratorios, with a sprinkling of instrumental pieces. But as Handel was a busy man and a businessman, and producing so much music so fast was no easy feat. This accounts for the fact that so many of his instrumental pieces are in fact recyclings – transcriptions, reorchestrations, transcriptions, according to what was available and requested – of earlier works, mostly his own, sometimes that of fellow composers – who would not necessarily be informed of the pillage. In the case of Concerto a due cori No. 1, Handel plundered a handful of his own operas and oratorios. The second of Handel's Concerti a due cori, HWV 333, written around the beginning of 1747, was premiered at Covent Garden in 1748 as part of a huge musical banquet, the main course of which was the brand new oratorio Alexander Balus. Here, the composer drew from some of his own English oratorios: Esther and Messiah, the latter still quite unknown. The wind groups take over melodic lines given to singers in the original choral versions of the adapted music. The third Concerto, HWV 334, contains mostly brand new music – yes! – even though the first movement is reworked in part from Handel's so-called Fitzwilliam Overture, for two clarinets and horn, while the concluding Allegro, with its brilliant and difficult horn writing, is a rewrite of a hunting aria from his own opera Partenope. For this recording, the Freiburger Barockorchester has added a twist: each soloist group is accompanied by its own string ensemble, thus creating a higly energetic stereo effect. One orchestra is conducted (from the violin) by Gottfried von der Goltz, the other – also from the Konzertmeister position – by Petra Müllejans. © SM/Qobuz
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Symphonic Music - Released March 11, 2011 | harmonia mundi

Booklets Distinctions Gramophone Editor's Choice
Georg Philipp Telemann's Tafelmusik is a collection of orchestral and chamber music in three large parts, each consisting of half a dozen works. It contains plenty of colorful music that's often heard by the piece, and the entire set, covering four CDs, represents a serious investment of time and money, even at the discounted price of this Harmonia Mundi release. Yet there's a strong case that a good Baroque music collection and certainly a library should contain a copy of the whole set, as indeed many collections did in the middle of the 18th century. The work's title and concept are modest: Tafelmusik means "table music," and each work in the individual sets is meant to correspond with a course of a meal. But the utilitarian veneer conceals an ambitious and synoptic work. The booklet notes (in French, English, and German) goes into quite a bit of detail: not only did Telemann participate in the ongoing effort to reconcile and combine the French and Italian styles, he also deepened his stylistic survey in several other ways. Most strikingly, he wrote French works with Italian elements, and vice versa. The Overture in D major that opens Part II (CD 2, tracks 10-14) is ostensibly a French form, but its individual movements avoid dance movements and instead exploit the group contrasts of Italian music. Further, the combination of orchestral and chamber music, which Telemann explicitly specified (and which ought to give pause to groups that automatically assume small ensembles are best), is unusual in itself. On top of all this, the occasional dashes of Polish folk rhythms (try the finale of the Quartet in D minor, CD 2, track 18) and the appearance of the new genres of sinfonia and quartet all combine to give the collection, taken as a whole, a brilliantly kaleidoscopic quality. The Freiburg Baroque Orchestra simply does not have a weak point in addressing the set's many demands. Vivacious soloists, crisp orchestral ensemble work, a certain feel for Telemann's pure flair: it's all here, and with absolutely top-notch sound, it adds up to a must-have for serious Baroque enthusiasts.
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Classical - Released February 10, 2014 | harmonia mundi

Hi-Res Booklet Distinctions Hi-Res Audio
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Classical - Released March 23, 2018 | Aparté

Hi-Res Booklet
From the start of the 18th century, Lutheran Germany has kept the tradition of performing an oratorio for the Passion in Holy Week. In Hamburg, where Telemann is said to have spent 46 years as musical director, he would have overseen as many Passions. But if we include his previous jobs, that would take the number of works by Telemann for this theme alone to over sixty! These Passions could be strictly liturgical, that is, they could closely follow the text of one of the Gospels; but they could also liberally paraphrase the story of the Passion, following a version by a contemporary author; or they could represent a meditation on the events. And so Seliges Erwägen by Telemann, whose full title leaves no doubt as to the content: Oratorio of the Passion, or Spiritual Contemplation on the bitter suffering and death of Jesus Christ, to inspire prayer, in several meditations taken from the account of the Passion. Not a linear account of the Passion, as with Bach: but a series of individual meditations set to music. The work was first composed in 1719, and then reviewed and completed three years later for Hamburg, where the first performance took place on 19 March 1722 the success was considerable, and the work was performed again and again many times throughout the following decades. This was probably the most-performed work on the Passion in the 18th century, out ahead even of Telemann's Brockes Passion... There is no evangelist here, nor storyteller, but rather an evocation of the main events of the Passion. That is why there are only two main "roles" here: Christ, with six airs and six recitations, and the allegory of the Devotion (soprano or tenor) as the mouthpiece for the thoughts of the faithful, with eight airs and eight recitations. The sole narrator is Peter, with his denial and despair, and Caiaphas, the high priest who condemns Jesus, comes on for a single, very violent, air. This is very much a series of individual devotional meditations. The instrumentation in particular is extraordinarily rich. Alongside the strings, the continuo and the standard woodwind, a dash of colour is added by two horns, two chalumeaux, ancestors of the clarinet – what a pity that Bach never made the most of this sound – echoing recorders, a magnificent bassoon solo that intermingles with the soprano's voice; in short, once again, Teleman proves to us that far from being a mill for middle-of-the-road baroque, he is in fact one of the most imposing musical minds of his age. The Freiburger Barockorchester and a lovely soloists come together to perform this work.. © SM/Qobuz
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Classical - Released August 1, 2011 | deutsche harmonia mundi

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Opera - Released May 3, 2013 | harmonia mundi

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Classical - Released October 7, 2014 | Carus

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Classical - Released August 26, 2016 | harmonia mundi

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Classical - Released April 13, 2010 | harmonia mundi

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Symphonic Music - Released June 4, 2002 | deutsche harmonia mundi

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Concertos - Released August 29, 2011 | deutsche harmonia mundi

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Classical - Released January 30, 2004 | harmonia mundi

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Classical - Released September 3, 1990 | deutsche harmonia mundi

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Classical - Released September 12, 2011 | deutsche harmonia mundi

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Classical - Released August 29, 2011 | deutsche harmonia mundi

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Cantatas (secular) - Released March 29, 2004 | deutsche harmonia mundi

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Classical - Released March 4, 2003 | deutsche harmonia mundi

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Classical - Released January 31, 2008 | harmonia mundi