Customer Review

5 of 5 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars A moving performance from Thielemann on a moving occasion at Dresden, 10 Mar 2012
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This review is from: Beethoven: Missa Solemnis [Blu-ray] [2011] (Blu-ray)
My thanks to a reader who has found this review wrongly listed by Amazon under the disc by Harnoncourt as well as being correctly listed under Thielemann's performance in Dresden. Unfortunately this is a common problem with listings and cannot be corrected by reviewers. Please be patient and understanding and either scroll down past this review or read it for unintentional additional interest if appropriate! Thanks - Ian Giles

Beethoven wrote this work in the aftermath of the Napoleonic Wars which affected Beethoven deeply. In 1823 he invited various European royal houses to subscribe to a printed edition of his Mass which is how a copy of the work with Beethoven's own autograph annotations has become a part of the holdings of the Saxon State and University library.

Every year on February 13th there is a commemorative concert held in Dresden to commemorate the destruction of Dresden towards the end of World War 2. In this case the concert also commemorated the 25th anniversary of the rebuilding of the opera house. These concerts always feature a requiem and end with a minute's silence without any applause. This end to the performance is included in this 2010 recording and is, in itself, a deeply moving conclusion.

The performance is very fine indeed and rises impressively to all climatic moments with a finely matched quartet of four star singers, committed singing from the choir and immaculate playing from the orchestra under the direction of Thielemann. The long solo violin obligato part throughout the Benedictus is particularly beautifully played by the leader, Matthias Wollong, and the Agnus Dei concludes the work with Beethoven's strong ' plea for inner and outer peace' making the strongest impact imaginable.

This is not a joyful occasion but it is a moving one. The camera work is suitably sensitive whilst being finely detailed and the sound is provided in both DTS-HD and stereo and is of the high quality that one knows now to expect from C Major.

This is a very fine recording and performance of this work and deserves to be considered seriously by purchasers interested in a high quality visual and sonic presentation of this work. This will particularly be so if they also respond to the connection being made between the work and the reason for its performance at Dresden on this occasion.


Some dialogue from the comments section that may offer further help:

A Historically and Musically interesting Review, Ian!
I shall order it now.
Very helpful, thank you. (U.K. review)

I thought that you might like to know that before I buy a recording I now look through all the reviews to see if you have posted one. Your assessments and opinions are invaluable. Thank you. (US review)

I particularly like your format of review. They give the prospective purchaser an idea of the style of the playing and relevant comparisons. They are succinct. Keep up the good work! (UK review)

I'm sure there are many other serious collectors, besides myself, who wait for your synopsis and opinion before spending their hard-earned money on new releases...
Keep up the good work!
Thank you (UK review)

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Showing 1-6 of 6 posts in this discussion
Initial post: 10 Mar 2012 22:07:47 GMT
Last edited by the author on 10 Mar 2012 22:10:47 GMT
A Historically and Musically interesting Review, Ian!

I shall order it now, and play it for my Audiences in the "Red Poppy Season" leading up to November 11th, if it seems appropriate. (Strange that I'm not at all familiar with this Work!)

Very helpful, thank you.

p.s. Antonio Gades: Carmen 112 minutes, Fuenteovejuna 106 minutes, Bodas de Sangre and Flamencos 134 minutes. If you're still hesitant, I'll cheerfully buy it and give you my opinion of it - please advise!

In reply to an earlier post on 11 Mar 2012 07:35:41 GMT
I. Giles says:
Glad the review was helpful. I am sure you will be impressed.
OK - I'll get the Gades!
Other recent revamped reviews now posted include - Nutcracker/Royal ballet; Nielsen complete symphonies.Cinderella / Birmingham; Don Quixote ballet/cuba National ballet; Coppelia/Royal ballet; BPO concert with Tchaik 6 & Beet VC/Ozawa;Schumann cello/Maisky & bernstein; Mozart concert/Bartoli & harnoncourt; Berlioz Troyens/Gardiner; Mozart Nozze/Gardiner

There are a few others but this will do for now!
I am gradually revising earlier reviews as I listen with a view to making them fuller in the style of my later efforts. Just takes time but is quite interesting to do!
Best wishes,

In reply to an earlier post on 11 Mar 2012 22:33:12 GMT
OK, Ian, I'm off to checkout those Revised Reviews!

By the way, if you click on the Reviewers Name, you'll get options including Check Top Reviewers. I looked at the first 10 pages of the #1 Reviewer (Dog Accessories, Books, Food, Knick Nacks, etc.) and I can't figure out how he has so many Yes Votes - maybe he gets Bonus Points for doing Video Reviews - it's all a Mystery!!

p.s. It's Lopez-Cobos, as far as I know

In reply to an earlier post on 12 Mar 2012 05:21:28 GMT
I. Giles says:
I agree about Lopez-Cobos so I was intrigued by the lack of hyphen anywhere on the packaging - his name is printed 3 times. So just for now I'll stick to the latest packaging version and not to what both you and I would expect. Strange though. Ian

Posted on 8 Aug 2013 19:29:17 BDT
Dear Ian:
I am sure you have meanwhile listened to Harnoncourt's new Missa. Same here, and I was tremendously moved by the performance. As I was unable to add my review in the proper place, being wrongly situated there with my Thielemann review, I simply tacked it on to the earlier one. You might want to check it out and perhaps follow my somewhat sloppy procedure. I am quite anxious to read your thoughts on Harnoncourt -- as I always eagerly await your reviews.
Best wishes and greetings,

In reply to an earlier post on 8 Aug 2013 21:48:45 BDT
Last edited by the author on 8 Aug 2013 21:50:06 BDT
I. Giles says:
Dear Gerhard,
You have got to the Harnoncourt version first! It is still on a list of possibles for me. However, I have already registered the problem of double listing. This is quite a regular problem with Amazon and I have also dealt with it in the same way as you have by posting a double review each time. I am glad you like my efforts at reviews.
At the moment I am working through the remainder of my CD collection with the new DVD/Blu-rays added in as they arrive. At the moment there are not many new issues that appeal. The next two will be a Holliger oboe recital and some Mozart quartets, both on Euroarts from 2005. The Euroarts Munich piano recitals from the late 1980's are well worth investigating too. Best wishes for now, Ian Giles.
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I. Giles

Location: Argyll, Scotland

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