Performer: Arleen Augér, Lucia Popp, Anthony Rolfe Johnson, Werner Hollweg, et al.
Orchestra: Argo Chamber Orchestra, Royal Philharmonic Orchestra
Conductor: Antal Dorati, Laszlo Heltay
Composer: Franz Joseph Haydn
Audio CD (January 23, 1996)
Number of Discs: 2
Format: FLAC (image+cue)
Size: 573 MB
Gabriel – Lucia Popp
Uriel – Werner Hollweg
Raphael – Kurt Moll
Eva – Helena Döse
Adam – Benjamin Luxon
Salve Regina, for 4 soloists, chorus, strings & organ obbligato in G minor (“Organ Solo”), H. 23b/2
01. Salve Regina
02. Eja ergo?
03. Et Jesum
Arleen Auger – soprano
Alfreda Hodgson – contralto
Anthony Rolfe Johnson – tenor
Gwynne Howell – bass
John Birch – continuo
The London Chamber Chor
The Argo Chamber Orchestra
Conducted by Laszlo Heltay
Die Schöpfung, oratorio, H. 21/2
04. Einleitung: Die Vorstellung des Chaos
05. Im Anfange schuf Gott Himmel und Erde
06. Nun schwanden vor dem heiligen Strahle
07. Und Gott machte das Firmament… Mit Staunen
08. Und Gott sprach… Rollend in schдumenden…
09. Und Gott sprach… Nun beut die Flur
10. Und die himmlischen Heerscharen… Stim…
11. Und Gott sprach… In vollem Glanze
12. Die Himmel erzehlen die Ehre Gottes
01. Und Gott sprach… Auf starkem Fittiche
02. Und Gott schuf groЯe Walfische
03. Und die Engel rьhrten… In holder Anmu…
04. Und Gott sprach… Gleich цffnet sich …
05. Nun scheint in vollem Glanze der Himmel
06. Und Gott schuf den Menschen… Mit Wьrd…
07. Und Gott sah jedes Ding… Vollendet is…
08. Aus Rosenwolken bricht
09. Von deiner Gut’, o Herr und Gott
10. Nun ist die erste Pflicht erfellt
11. Holde Gattin!
12. O glucklich Paar… Singt dem Herren al…
Three bright archangels in the ultimate ‘Die Schopfung’.
Antal Dorati’s 1976 version, recorded in London with `two groups’ of soloists:
The three archangels Raphael (Kurt Moll), Gabriel (Lucia Popp) and Uriel (Werner Hollweg). Then the human couple, Adam (Benjamin Luxon) and Eve (Helena Doese).
This has the added benefit of not mixing up the characters, as the baritone and soprano singing Adam and Eve sound distinctly different from the angels Raphael and Gabriel.
I have mentioned elsewhere what an eminent exponent of this work Lucia Popp was. Here, in her vocal prime, she was simply a dazzling Gabriel, unsurpassed by Janowitz or Roeshcmann, two of my `second’ favourites in this work.
Kurt Moll’s Raphael is simply jaw dropping – he sounds not just `big’, but formidable, an aspect that other expert exponents of this part do not normally own, such as Ramey, van Dam, Kim Borg.
Werner Hollweg as Uriel is a real surprise. I do not expect this lessor well known lieder expert to be so capable – competent clearly is not the apt description of such an exceptional level performance. His Uriel is a real force of nature. He is both great in the big recitatives, the solo arias, and in ensemble. His voice matches Moll and Popp’s exceedingly well. Indeed, when there was already exponents as eminent as Hollweg, one need not incessantly whine over the loss of Fritz Wunderlich in his unfinished Karajan studio recording.
Luxon’s baritone is less transcendent sounding as Moll’s, and he is ideally casted as Adam for this more `human’ timbre, so does Helena Doese’s Eve, with her much more earthy tone than Popp’s.
Dorati really knows the work well. At many moments, his approach is preferred to even Karajan’s.
Part 1 of CD in this dual Decca reissue contains Haydn’s ‘Salve Regina’, chiefly a choral piece of work, in three parts.
A Sublime Creation
This album is a superb recording of Haydn’s oratorio The Creation conducted by Antal Dorati and featuring the incredible voices of bass Kurt Moll and soprano Lucia Popp. There is another recording I like, an obscure recording with Roland Bader conducting the Cracow National Philharmonic and the voices of soprano Teresa Seidl, tenor Christian Elsner and baritone Michael Volle. This recording is the best and the singers are divine and it’s too bad it’s not really well known or circulated. But this recording is dynamic and powerful and beautiful. It would be my second choice of favorite. Haydn, who together with Mozart lead the Classical movement (1750-1820)was inspired to compose the massive oratorio after listening to a performance of Handel’s Messiah. Of course, the Messiah is far superior in many ways and is the most spiritual work of music ever made but Haydn gave it his best and produced a marvelous miracle of music. The Creation features arias, recitatives, ensembles and chorus much like Handel’s Messiah and the lyrics are taken from Milton’s epic poem Paradise Lost. The Creation tells of the creation of the universe and the earth by God and the creation of Man- Adam and his wife Eve. The second part, rather than describing the Fall in the Garden of Eden, instead praises God and his creation in glowing terms.
To effectively perform The Creation, a fine cast of singers and a sophisticated and well-trained chorus is necessary. I feel this album does that perfectly. Soprano Lucia Popp, a German-born singer, sang numerous roles in opera for lyric and coloratura voice and she was comfortable in Mozart operas, Lieder, and the oratario like Carmina Burana by Carl Orff. Her voice is heavenly and full of spiritual fire as the angel Gabriel and as Eve. Bass baritone Kurt Moll, more a bass than a baritone, has a resonant, deep voice that often reminds one of the voice of God. He is perfect for the voice of the angel Raphael and he doubles as Adam. He is an exceptionally gifted artist and his voices are among the greatest in bass singers. This is a great album and is sure to cast a powerful spell over you. The Creation and The Messiah are the most inspiring works of music written about God for God.