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J.S. Bach: Kothener Trauermusik, BWV244a / Pygmalion, Raphael Pichon

Conductor Ensemble

Notes & Reviews:

International Record Review, March 2015
The performance itself, luxuriating in the princely acoustic of the chapelle royale at Versailles, is well matched to the high quality of the music ... Pygmalion's performance [features]...fuller choral forces and generously appointed orchestral accompaniment, and beautifully recorded too.

The Observer, 9th November 2014
Morgan Jourdain's reconstruction follows Andrew Parrott's pioneering first recording, with some differences...The performances under Raphadl Pichon are lithe and sprightly, almost too cheerful, but always transparent, with alto Damien Guillon outstanding.

Early Music Review, December 2014
The band and the 17 singers perform with great conviction, and bring clarity and finesse to the music.

BBC Music Magazine, February 2015
The choral sound is refreshing; the instrumental performance attractive...Pichon is unlikely to have the last word on the Trauermusik mystery but it's a fine recording nonetheless.

MusicWeb International, 16th December 2014
The Harmonia Mundi engineers excel in providing cool, clear, well balanced sound. I can report that full German texts are provided with translations in French and English together with several high quality articles. This captivating recording of Bach's reconstructed K÷thener Trauermusik for Prince Leopold of Anhalt-C÷then is beautifully performed by the Ensemble Pygmalion under Raphadl Pichon. It's excellently recorded too.

When Leopold of Anhalt-Cöthen died in 1728, his former Kapellmeister had not forgotten the five brilliant years he had spent in the prince's service. He wrote a cantata dedicated to his memory based on the music of two major works of the mid 1720s - the Trauer-Ode and the St. Matthew Passion. Although the score to the Köthener Trauermusik is lost, the wordbook and other sources of information have now made it possible to create a performing edition. In his first recording for harmonia mundi, Raphaël Pichon leads the ensemble Pygmalion in a rediscovery of this little-known work.

American Record Guide, March/April 2015
It is interesting, even valuable, to have this reconstructed cantata recorded at last, paradoxically because this "new" work is full of music instantly recognizable to Bach lovers. Fortunately, too, the performance is a very capable one. Of the soloists only Devieilhe is familiar to me. Nicely detailed exposition of this reconstruction. The booklet notes are very helpful, and the full text is given with translations.


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