Related Reviews
Early Music Today
'Career Highlight'
more >>
Classical Voice of North Carolina
‘This recording is the best one I have ever heard. Because of its extraordinary recorded sound…’
more >>
The Absolute Sound
'superb'
more >>
Classics Today France
‘Ceci posé, dans sa logique chambriste, la réalisation est formidable: finesse des dosages instrumentaux, ductilité du choeur, choix idéal des solistes.’
more >>
Criticaclassica.com
'we believe that this incision can become an important benchmark in the category of record versions of "The Creation" by Haydn.'
more >>
Fanfare Magazine
'...so electric that one wants to stand up and cheer..'
more >>
Thewholenote.com
'If you are looking for a historically informed performance with period instruments which also shows passion and drama, I would recommend this version.'
more >>
WQXR
'...an Operavore nod for the supple, radiant, and unfailingly musical singing of soprano Amanda Forsythe.'
more >>
Fanfare Magazine
'Pearlman and his forces produce a performance of great dramatic force without skimping on its charm.'
more >>
Manchester Evening News
Named one of the 'Top Ten Classical CDs of 2012'
more >>
Criticaclassica.com
'This is a recording of the highest level, thanks in part to the excellent performance of the U.S. team, capable of exalting the bright colors and the most solemn, that the three singers, with voices of great intensity.'
more >>
Opera News
The sound is beautifully balanced, and Haydn's livelier choral episodes showcase the ensemble's terrific flexibility.
more >>
American Record Guide
'This is the most joyful Creation I've ever heard.'
more >>
Colorado Public Radio
'Congratulations on a stunning recording.'
more >>
Boston Globe
'sparkling new recording'
more >>
Gramophone
'Pearlman's soloists are all accomplished.'
more >>
Pizzicato
'graceful and soulful, expressive playing.'
more >>
SA-CD.net
4 Stars
'the sonic aspects are superb'
more >>
BBC Music Magazine
4 Stars
'This new version...lives up to its high reputation in this clean account, nicely scaled and finely balanced under the direction of Martin Pearlman.'
more >>
Classical Music Sentinel
'...the Boston Baroque orchestra under the direction of Martin Pearlman is a delightful listening experience'.
more >>
Choir & Organ
5 Stars
'Martin Pearlman extracts every subtle nuance out of the score.'
more >>
Gramophone
'...choral singing and orchestral playing are splendidly alive...'
more >>
ArkivMusic
Recommendation: 'A magnificent, masterful display of orchestral eloquence, dramatic capabilities, and superb choral writing. Martin Pearlman captures the work's essential majesty and expressive chracter, the orchestra conveys Haydn's colorful score as well as any, and the chorus is second to none.'
more >>
Jewish Daily Forward
'This new set by Boston Baroque under Martin Pearlman can take its place among the very best, rising in sound and spirit to the heights of Haydn's sublime music.'
more >>
MDR Figaro
'...in klanglich transparenter Form.'
more >>
The Plain Dealer
5 Stars
'If only actual creation resembled this recording. Then would the world be a place of unspoiled beauty and perfect harmony.'
more >>
WFMT
5 Stars
'The three-time Grammy-nominated Boston Baroque marks the beginning of its relationship with Linn,,,'
more >>
Cleveland.com's Digital Dose
'Soprano Amanda Forsythe is a gleaming delight and Kevin Deas wields a rich, evocative bass.'
more >>
Audio Video Club of Atlanta
'Sheer, matchless poetry, beautifully rendered and captured here.'
more >>
Allmusic.com
4½ Stars
'The hybrid SACD presentation is first-rate, and the musicians have phenomenal presence and clarity.'
more >>
Buffalo News
4 Stars
'The big choruses have zest. And there is glory in the details.'
more >>
Time Out NY
4 Stars
'Even so, Pearlman's expert Boston players and vocalists-Deas; deft, ultra-charming Met tenor Keith Jameson; and spring water clear soprano Amanda Forsythe, who aces her ravishing arias and scatters delightful trills-make this well-recorded set a delight.'
more >>
Infodad.com
4 Stars
'Boston Baroque, under Martin Pearlman, holds all those keys and knows how to use them to unlock the manifest beauties of the score: the group's performance is outstanding.'
more >>
Classical CD Review
'This is a major choral issue.'
more >>
The Sunday Times
'Pearlman and his choir and period band are excellent.'
more >>
Musical Toronto
5 Stars
'...a sparkling new recording of The Creation...'
more >>
Musicweb International
'The recording in 24/96 format is excellent...'
more >>
Criticaclassica
A nice review in Italian. 'Strongly recommended'
more >>
Classics Today
'This orchestra conveys Haydn's colorful score as well as any, and this chorus is second to none for its unbridled energy and uncommonly articulate delivery.'
more >>
Audiophile Audition
5 Stars
'...the results are spectacular.'
more >>
Musical Pointers
'enjoyable and convincing'
more >>

Boston Baroque - Haydn Creation - International Record Review


01 September 2012
International Record Review
William Hedley

The striking cover photograph of an erupting volcano at night is carried over into the booklet, whose text is printed in white on a dark background. This makes for handsome presentation...A useful introductory by the conductor and information about the performers are also provided. The recorded sound is rich, clear and lifelike, though if soloists are often placed too far forward for your taste, you might find that here too. The first two parts of the work are placed uninterrupted on the first SACD, with the final part on the second.

Boston Baroque, as the name suggests, uses period instruments. Recitatives are accompanied by a fortepiano. The hefty wind section required by Haydn's extraordinarily vivid orchestration is balanced by strings fairly restrained in number - six first violins, for example, and two double basses. Twenty-five singers make up the choir. In his booklet essay, the conductor explains that in as least one performance conducted by Haydn himself the choir and orchestra were even smaller than here. He also points out that Haydn is reported to have preferred ‘quick, vigorous tempos'. Martin Pearlman has had access to old manuscript parts used by soloists and has incorporated some of the ornamentation noted therein - discreet, musical and extremely effective - into this performance. The use of three soloists only, rather than the five favoured by some conductors, is defended by pointing out that this was always the case in composer-conducted performances.

Amanda Forsythe has a most pleasing voice, bright, clear and readily communicative. She has the agility required...and there is a smile in her voice that is very winning. There are moments when Keith Jameson's voice bears an uncanny resemblance to that of Wilfred Brown, a happy association for this listener. He gets right inside the text, his singing most musical, with a particularly satisfying legato line. Bass-baritone Kevin Deas is at home in the higher reaches of the part, which is surprising given the presence and power of his lower notes, including an unauthorized but irresistible bottom D when evoking the ‘sinuous' worm. There are times when he might have brought more variety of colour to his singing - the animals in this same recitative could have been more vividly conjured up, for example - but this is nonetheless an assured performance.

The chorus is alert, expert and certainly makes itself heard. Indeed, choir/orchestra balance is ideal, allowing many passages to be properly imposing and monumental. The orchestral playing is pretty much vibrato-free - though the soloists are allowed a little, very tasteful and controlled - and the playing is skilful and sensitive with some attractive work from the wind soloists, for whom this work is a gift...

In all, this is a delightful, charming and often moving performance on a smallish scale...


Bookmark and Share


Related Links

Boston BaroqueBoston Baroque
Haydn: The CreationHaydn: The Creation