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Magdalena Consort: Recreation for the Soul
The Magdalena Consort's first disc, directed by Peter Harvey, with singers Elin Manahan Thomas, Daniel Taylor and James Gilchrist, features three well-known sacred cantatas by J.S. Bach, linked by an consideration of the symbolism underlying Bach's musical decisions. Bach's earliest cantata - BWV 150 Nach dir, Herr, verlanget mich - was written for Mühlhausen, while the other two, BWV 78 Jesu, der du meine Seele, and BWV 147 Herz und Mund und Tat und Leben are well-known as traditional 'choral' pieces, the latter featuring the decorated chorale known as 'Jesu, joy of man's desiring'. (Due for release in August 2014)
J.S. BACH: B minor Mass
Concerto Copenhagen, directed by the Danish harpsichordist Lars-Ulrik Mortensen, with soloists Maria Keohane, Joanne Lunn, Alex Potter and Charles Daniels. This is a version with ten voices and a small instrumental band.
J.S. BACH: St Matthew Passion - Early version
Yorkshire Bach Soloists, directed by Peter Seymour. Peter Harvey again sings the Bass 1 rôles - Christus and the last two arias (Komm, süßes Kreuz - which features the original lute solo, rather than viola da gamba - and Mache dich, mein Herze rein), plus the aria usually sung by the 1st alto soloist Ach, wo is mein Jesus hin?.
Rachel Brown - flautist (with aria from Bach cantata 8, for bass voice and virtuoso flute obbligato)
This disc is a showcase for the wonderful British flautist Rachel Brown, and the cantata from which this aria is taken was written by Bach with the flautist .... in mind, and is a scintillating test of both the flautist's and the singer's skill.
Future recordings include Handel's L'Allegro, il Penseroso ed il Moderato with the Gabrieli Consort and Players, directed by Paul McCreesh, and Bach's St Matthew Passion, with the Stuttgart Chamber Choir, dorected by Frieder Bernius.