Over the last few months I have been immersing myself in Handel's dramatic oratorios and operas. It has been an incredible experience and for months I have listened to little but Handel and it has filled my life with joy! Many of the works I have encountered during this trek left me in no doubt about the status of both the performance and the work.
This performance seems wonderful with beautiful singing from all the soloists and the choir and more than adequate (perhaps it lack character?) orchestral playing. It seems sensibly paced and so on. I do feel, though, that the power of Handel's writing seems a little weaker in this work than it does in, say, Theodora or Saul or Belshazzer or Samson (or, for that matter, any of the Italian operas that I have heard). You do not quite get that sense of almost too many really amazing musical ideas jostling for a place. But for all that, much of this work is absolutely first rate. There is lots of fine music here and the odd song that is a real highlight and I am certainly pleased to have bought these records.