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John Christopher Smith (1712-1795): The Seasons, oratorio / Kirkby, Mead, Mammel, Simon, Festival Choir Musica Fanconia, Riedelbauch

Audio Samples

  1. John Christopher Smith — The Seasons: Sinfonia $0.99 on iTunes
  2. John Christopher Smith — The Seasons: Sinfonia. Larghetto $0.99 on iTunes
  3. John Christopher Smith — The Seasons: "The seasons, as they change." (Chorus) $0.99 on iTunes
  4. John Christopher Smith — The Seasons: The Spring, Sinfonia $0.99 on iTunes
  5. John Christopher Smith — The Seasons: The Spring, Recitative. "Forth in the pleasing Spring." (Soprano) $0.99 on iTunes
  6. John Christopher Smith — The Seasons: The Spring, Air. "Wide glow the fields." (Soprano) $0.99 on iTunes
  7. John Christopher Smith — The Seasons: Summer, Pastorale $0.99 on iTunes
  8. John Christopher Smith — The Seasons: Summer, Recitative. "Then comes Thy glory." (Tenor) $0.99 on iTunes
  9. John Christopher Smith — The Seasons: Summer, Air. "And oft Thy voice." (Tenor, Chorus) $0.99 on iTunes
  10. John Christopher Smith — The Seasons: Autumn, Sinfonia $0.99 on iTunes
  11. John Christopher Smith — The Seasons: Autumn, Recitative. "A yellow floating pomp." (Alto) $0.99 on iTunes
  12. John Christopher Smith — The Seasons: Autumn, Air. "Thrown from Thy lap." (Alto) $0.99 on iTunes
  13. John Christopher Smith — The Seasons: Autumn, Air. "In Winter dreadful Thou." (Bass) $0.99 on iTunes
  14. John Christopher Smith — The Seasons: Autumn, Air. "Mysterious sound!." (Chorus) $0.99 on iTunes
  15. John Christopher Smith — The Seasons: "Nature, attend." (Chorus) $0.99 on iTunes
  16. John Christopher Smith — The Seasons: Air. "To Him, ye gales." (Soprano) $0.99 on iTunes
  17. John Christopher Smith — The Seasons: "Oh talk of Him in solitary glooms." (Chorus) $0.99 on iTunes
  18. John Christopher Smith — The Seasons: Accompagnato. "And ye, whose bolder note." (Tenor) $0.99 on iTunes
  19. John Christopher Smith — The Seasons: Air. "His praise, ye brooks, attune." (Soprano) $0.99 on iTunes
  20. John Christopher Smith — The Seasons: Trio. "Ye headlong torrents." $0.99 on iTunes
  21. John Christopher Smith — The Seasons: "Ye headlong torrents." (Chorus) $0.99 on iTunes
  22. John Christopher Smith — The Seasons: Recitative. "Roll up your incense." (Bass) $0.99 on iTunes
  23. John Christopher Smith — The Seasons: Air. "Ye Forests bend." (Bass) $0.99 on iTunes
  24. John Christopher Smith — The Seasons: Recitative. "Ye That keep watch in heaven." (Alto) $0.99 on iTunes
  25. John Christopher Smith — The Seasons: Air. "Ye That keep watch in heaven." (Alto) $0.99 on iTunes
  26. John Christopher Smith — The Seasons: Accompagnato. "Great source of day." (Soprano) $0.99 on iTunes
  27. John Christopher Smith — The Seasons: Duetto. "The thunder rolls." (Soprano, Alto) $0.99 on iTunes
  28. John Christopher Smith — The Seasons: Recitative. "Bleat out afresh." (Tenor, Bass) $0.99 on iTunes
  29. John Christopher Smith — The Seasons: Air. "For the Great Shepherd reigns." (Tenor) $0.99 on iTunes
  30. John Christopher Smith — The Seasons: Accompagnato. "Ye woodlands all, awake." (Soprano) $0.99 on iTunes
  31. John Christopher Smith — The Seasons: Air. "Sweetest of birds." (Soprano) $0.99 on iTunes
  32. John Christopher Smith — The Seasons: Recitative. "Ye chief." (Tenor) $0.99 on iTunes
  33. John Christopher Smith — The Seasons: "Crown the great hymn." (Chorus) $0.99 on iTunes

Album Summary

>Smith, John Christopher : The Seasons, oratorio for soloists, chorus & orchestra
Conductor Ensemble Composer

Notes & Reviews:

Already 60 years before Joseph Haydn, the German composer John Christopher Smith wrote an oratorio about the seasons that was also based on the epic poem 'The Seasons' by the Scottish poet James Thomson. Smith was born in 1712 in Ansbach as Johann Christoph Schmidt and emigrated with his parents to London, for his father worked as a manager and copyist for George Frederic Handel. Young Smith received his first instruction from the master personally and later became Handel's closest working associate. He helped Handel with his composing and, when his mentor became blind, he directed performances of his oratorios. But Smith himself was also a recognized composer who was 'highly appreciated by many of the 'first heads' in the Kingdom', as the English music scholar Charles Burney reported. His oratorio about the seasons is an imaginative tone painting in a style which extends beyond the baroque, already introducing elements of the Empfindsamer Stil (Sensitive Style). In particular, Smith's colorful representations of nature - ranging from birdsong and the undulations of the forest to icy winter storms - are very successfully realized. They show that he was far more than just Handel's assistant.

American Record Guide, November/December 2014
A fascinating work, certainly, and I kept thinking of Wordsworth, with his near worship of nature, who was born two years before ill health forced Smith to abandon his musical career and 25 years before the composer died in 1795. I am somewhat surprised to read that Smith and Handel, at first pupil and master, were later competitors on the English musical scene. It is very well performed here. The notes include good information about the composer and his work, as well as texts and translations.

Notes & Reviews:

Recording information: St. Sebald, Nürnberg, Germany (07/14/2012-07/15/2012).



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Works Details

>Smith, John Christopher : The Seasons, oratorio for soloists, chorus & orchestra
  • Conductor: Wolfgang Riedelbauch
  • Ensemble: La Banda
  • Notes: St. Sebald, Nürnberg, Germany (07/14/2012-07/15/2012)
  • Running Time: 87 min. 2 sec.
  • Period Time: Classical
  • Form: Cantata/Oratorio