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Der Tod Jesu.
Dorothee Mields, Britta Schwarz, Jan Kobow, Klaus Mertens. Magdeburger Kammerchor Telemann Kammerorchester Michaelstein Ludger Remy.
CPO 999-720-2 76m DDD.
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Once again, I am quite happy to review a new disc of a work by Telemann whose output of music is rather abreast with the more popular Bach but who is consistently overshadowed in favour of the great master. 'Der Tod Jesu' is rather similar to the St John Passion in its reflective thematic inspiration and absence of bombastic religious statements. The scoring makes very effective use of the wind instruments, especially the oboe d'amore which was indeed one of Telemann's favourite instruments. Ludger Remy's soloists are solid in the best German tradition with Dorothee Mields leaving a particularly good impression. As one can read from the extensive notes, 'Der Tod Jesu' had a long gestation period and the end product sums up various influences on Telemann's music but which are always used to good effect especially the Bach-like parts in the chorales that are quite plentiful. Remy's orchestra play with a good deal of involvement and the splendidly clear recording is an ideal window on the proceedings going on. Whilst I cannot say that this oratorio is better than Telemann's infinitely more illustrious counterpart, it is a good example of the work going on in Germany at that time. It is thus recommended for the various reasons listed above.

Gerald Fenech



See also review by Peter Woolf


Gerald Fenech



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