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Thread: Bach Mass in B Minor BWV 232 - recommendation?

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    Senior Member kg4fxg's Avatar
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    Default Bach Mass in B Minor BWV 232 - recommendation?

    Do you have a favorite version of the Bach Mass in B Minor? Each time I look to purchase it and read reviews and can't decided what CD to buy.

    Any recommendations? Please post your thoughts, reviews, links.

    Thanks
    No, it's a Bb. It looks wrong and it sounds wrong, but it's right - Vaughan Williams.

    Bill Carter, CPA

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    Senior Member BuddhaBandit's Avatar
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    This is one of my favorite pieces. I would highly recommend starting with John Eliot Gardiner's version, with Phillipe Herreweghe and Masaaki Suzuki as close seconds. Don't buy Robert Shaw's version, because he tends to make the music prettier and less dramatic.
    Take a look at the Bandit's blog, Americana Avenue.

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    I've been curious about this as well...I bought the EMI Classics reissue of the B Minor Mass with von Karajan/Vienna..and it definitely is a gorgeous recording. (I bought it was available for a decent price at a smaller store that doesn't really have much classical, so I would've bought it automatically) However, I am interested in something like the Gardiner - to give the period recording a representation in my collection.

    I don't have any other recordings with which to compare von Karajan's, but if you're not a serious collector and are easily satisfied with musical beauty, you will not be let down with this reading.

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    Senior Member handlebar's Avatar
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    The Gardiner by far and away.

    Jim

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    Senior Member jhar26's Avatar
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    Gardiner - definitely.

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    Among the HIP recordings, which one is the HIPest?

    I'm really interested because all of the versions I own and hear - Klemperer, Enescu and Karajan - are nowhere near HIP!

    Thanks

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    Senior Member Celloman's Avatar
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    I own the Gardiner, and I can safely say that I have never been disappointed. It's a healthy balance between the puritanism of Rifkin and the giganticism of Celibidache. Not that those interpreters don't have anything to say about it. I tend to prefer my Bach somewhere in the middle.

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    Senior Member DavidA's Avatar
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    Gardiner is good and so is Herreweghe in this second recording with a gorgeously slow Agnus Dei from Scholl. I don't go for the one a part castrated singing type, however, nor do I buy the line that it's what Bach did originally so we must do it. Bach no doubt had limited resources and possibly inferior singers. But that doesn't mean we must.

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    Senior Member Il_Penseroso's Avatar
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    The best I've ever heard:

    In a world which is ruled by gangsters and maniacs, art means nothing but just a junk food and there's no hope for human's salvation throughout... (Shāmlou)

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    Member Schumann's Avatar
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    My 2 top performers for the Mass in B Minor are definitely both Philippe Herreweghe: Collegium Vocale Gent or Harry Christophers: The Sixteen Choir & Orchestra these two are just right in every way, especially the Agnus Dei part by Philippe Herreweghe & Andreas Scholl is beyond perfection!

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    Senior Member Itullian's Avatar
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    Suzuki for me.
    In all the Bach choral works.
    When all else fails, listen to Thick as a Brick.

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    Senior Member Fritz Kobus's Avatar
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    Last edited by Fritz Kobus; Nov-05-2013 at 13:32.
    "All of Italian opera can be heard in [Bellini's] "Ah! non creda [mirarti]."
    --Renata Scotto in "Scotto, More Than a DIva."

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    I wouldn't be caught dead without my Enescu, Ferrier's singing of the Agnus Dei is the very essence of this music.

    Karajan's rendition, not too fond. But Christa Ludwig's extremely slow Agnus Dei... transcendental. I always go back to this.

    Klemperer is probably the best balance among the ones I have, certainly the best performance but, in my opinion, tough Janet Baker is ALWAYS perfect, and I mean PERFECT, this music isn't quite as human with her as it is with Ferrier or Ludwig.

    The Jochum is also a good recording, somewhere in the middle. Fassbaender, like Janet Baker, perfect and, again, not as human as Ferrier nor as transcendental as Ludwig.

    I forgot to mention I also have the Gardiner, most definitely not my favorite, but I want something more HIP! Mostly for comparison/curiosity.

    I'm also not fond of men singing the Alto parts but I know there's no way around it with HIP recordings of the mass.

    Men singing Vivaldi's Stabat Matter also bother me

    Thanks!

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    Masaaki Suzuki with Bach Collegium Japan. Simply heavenly. If you want the others, by all means buy them as well - it is impossible to have too many recordings of this work. But start with Suzuki.

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    Thanks, I will! Any idea if it's available as a lossless download somewhere?

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