Paul McCreesh, Gabrieli Consort, Wroclaw Philharmonic Orchestra – Berlioz: Grande Messe des Morts (1837) (2011)
FLAC (tracks) 24 bit/48 kHz | Time – 01:28:34 minutes | 846 MB | Genre: Classical
Studio Masters, Official Digital Download | Digital Booklet, Front Cover | © Signum Records
Paul McCreesh is one of the leading figures in the movement for historically informed performances, and he established his reputation primarily in Renaissance and Baroque music. Yet he is versatile and noted for his varied interests, and he has delved into the Romantic repertoire for this spectacular 2010 recording with Ensemble Wroclaw of Hector Berlioz’s Grande Messe des Morts.
The immense forces required to perform this masterwork include the Wroclaw Philharmonic Choir and Orchestra, the Gabrieli Consort and Players, the Chetham’s School of Music Symphonic Brass Ensemble, along with tenor Robert Murray and assistant conductor Benjamin Bayl, and they produce the wide range of colors and effects that Berlioz wanted. The famous Tuba mirum of the Dies irae – notable for its deployment of the choir, an enlarged orchestra, four brass bands stationed around the auditorium, and multiple timpani, bass drums, cymbals, and tam-tams – is certainly a high point in any recording of the Requiem, and the combined ensembles deliver a stunning Last Judgment scene that rivals any that came before it. But the bulk of Berlioz’s music is reflective and quiet, and McCreesh and his musicians demonstrate a spiritual depth and vast calmness that make this Requiem a profoundly meditative and moving experience. Signum’s sound is spacious and resonant, which adds to the majesty and the mystery of the music.
McCreesh has achieved something quite out of the ordinary in this performance…The impact is overwhelming, not merely in the full-throated eruptions…The concept of Berlioz’s Requiem Mass may embrace a certain element of grandiosity but, listening to this performance, it is impossible to forget that Berlioz was a supreme orchestrator and a composer with a broad dramatic talent.
01. Grande messe des morts, H 75: I. Requiem et Kyrie
02. Grande messe des morts, H 75: II. Dies Irae
03. Grande messe des morts, H 75: III. Quid sum miser
04. Grande messe des morts, H 75: IV. Rex tremendae
05. Grande messe des morts, H 75: V. Quaerens me
06. Grande messe des morts, H 75: VI. Lacrimosa
07. Grande messe des morts, H 75: VII. Offertorium
08. Grande messe des morts, H 75: VIII. Hostias
09. Grande messe des morts, H 75: IX. Sanctus
10. Grande messe des morts, H 75: X. Agnus Dei
Grande Messe des Morts
ROBERT MURRAY Tenor
WROCLAW PHILHARMONIC ORCHESTRA
CHETHAM’S SCHOOL OF MUSIC SYMPHONIC BRASS ENSEMBLE
WROCLAW PHILHARMONIC CHOIR
AGNIESZKA FRANKÓW-ZELAZNY Artistic Director, Wrocław Philharmonic Choir
BENJAMIN BAYL Assistant Conductor
NICOLE TIBBELS Pronunciation Advisor