Dunedin Consort - Handel: Samson - BBC Radio 3 ‘Record Review’

John Butt and the Dunedin Consort’s most ambitious recording project so far has just arrived. Handel’s oratorio Samson. In a new performing version with an authentic Handelian chorus comprising of both solo sopranos and boy trebles, and a cast of soloists that really deliver.

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The final chorus from Handel’s most operatic Oratorio, Samson, with the voices of Mary Bevan, Jess Dandy, Matthew Brook and Tiffin Boys’ Choir adding its distinctive timbre to the adults of the Dunedin Consort, directed by John Butt. As Samson himself, tenor Joshua Ellicott navigates that tight-rope between oratorio and opera really well. So does Sophie Bevan as Delilah. In fact, that’s one of the joys of Butt’s new recording, revelling in the dramatic colour of Handel's imaginative score and the remarkable sequence of arias and choruses that capture Samson and the hostile Philistines. Brilliantly balanced recording as well. Handel’s Samson in John Butt’s new edition on 3 CD’s from Linn Records, released yesterday.

BBC Radio 3 ‘Record Review’
26 October 2019