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4.5 out of 5 stars
51
4.5 out of 5 stars
Format: Audio CD|Change
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on 2 June 2008
I first bought this Elijah set on old LP records in my first year at university and it positively blew me away. Dietrich Fischer-Dieskau comes booming in as the prophet right from the outset and the power of his characterisation of this greatest of the Old Testament prophets holds up for the full duration of the recording. The other thing I liked about this version of the oratorio is the all round clarity of the diction. All of the soloists excel here and the choir is likewise very good even in some of those chorus numbers when there is an awful lot going on both vocally and with the orchestra. The price for this album is an absolute snip, so why pay more when this recording will clearly continue to give value for years to come.
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on 16 August 2016
What an excellent version of Elijah this is in spite of its 1968 vintage. When you check the soloists it's like reading a vocal artists' hall of fame. Dietrich Fischer-Dieskau takes on the title role ably assisted by Gwyneth Jones, Janet Baker and Nicolai Gedda. There's lots to enjoy in this great oratorio.
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on 25 March 2017
This album was rather spoiled by 2 tracks: He shall give His angels charge was delivered like an express train on turbo fuel. 8 pages of score were squeezed into 2.08 mins!! Then Cast thy burden, which has just 2 pages of score was so painfully slow that they stretched it to 2.22 mins. Not only that, but was so quiet that even on max volume was only just acceptable. However, the rest of the album was good.
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on 21 June 2017
Started to learn choruses from Elijah with Lee Choral Society. It is hard work note bashing Elijah, therefore bought this CD which has really helped to hear the whole work. It has grown on me the more I've listened to it and now some of the movements really have a resonance because of the way the world is turning at the moment. Janet Baker's voice is divine.
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on 14 August 2017
good
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on 18 July 2017
Bought as gift. Recipient is enjoying it
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on 29 May 2017
The voices are more important than the orchestra.
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on 24 April 2013
What a superb recording of Mendelssohn's Elijah!
It brought back such wonderful memories for me, of hearing it live in the Royal Festival Hall in London in June 1968, the evening before this recording was to be made.
My seat was about four rows back from the stage and on the same level as Deitrich Fischer-Dieskau. At the time, I had a friend who was a volunteer steward and let me mingle behind stage afterwards and so meet all the participants.- - all speaking German!
A magical experience which I was able to enjoy again not lond after, when I was given a set of the records as soon as they came out later. Now brilliantly digitally remastered to make this new CD edition, which when originally recorded was acclaimed as 'An Ideal Elijah' with the soloists, Choir and orchestra at their peak. 'It is enough' with cello is my all time favourite moment as it gathers the full scope of Elijah's feelings although all taking part give it their all to thrilling effect. Elijah lives!
The quality of the recording is as good as being there - almost - and can be enjoyed over and over again - especially if the volume can be turned up - without disturbing the neighbours too much!
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on 14 May 2009
This may be an old, pre-digital, recording, but then it contains old, pre-digital, masters of their craft. Fischer-Diskau, Gedda, Baker; what more could you ask for? It is a recording that others are only compared to. And really good value too! 100% recommendation for those with a taste for oratorios.
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on 2 November 2011
Surprisingly it is the German and Swede who show up our Welsh soprano how to sing clear, impeccable English. Fischer-Dieskau has got his notes and interpretation right but it is too much lieder-singing for my liking. Also, essentially his is still a lyric baritone, albeit sizable in terms of volume, so he lacks the darkness at the bottom and robustness at the top that a genuine bass-baritone can command but nonetheless his singing has nobility and is most expressive throughout. Gedda is by far the best tenor, combining perfect diction with beautiful legato, and the forward placement of his voice gives out the brilliance and clarity, easily putting all his counter-parts in every other set to shame. Baker is simply born for the part, and what makes it special is the quiet radiance having so much warmth, with supreme diction, lovely legato and great feeling throughout. Jones is the weakest link - lovely voice but wooly with her words, and at times her approach shows she is an operatic rather than a genuine oratorio singer.
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