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Here are two outstanding, revelatory discs: a sublimely a sublimely convincing reconstruction of J.S. Bach’s Trauermusik for Prince Leopold and his son J.C.’s Messa di Requiem . For the former, sections of the St Matthew Passion and the Trauer-Ode are re-used with Picander’s alternative text in a manner that seems irreproachably ‘right’, presented by Andrew Parrott and the Taverner Consort & Players with gorgeous solo voices and the classiest of playing – a fantastic idea, brilliantly executed. From the personal, pietistic, Protestant devotional intimacy of the father it’s quite a leap to the classical, Catholic and ceremonial style of the son who was very clearly the ‘Italian Bach’ first, ere he reached London. His requiem as performed by RIAS Kammerchor and the Akademie für Alte Musik Berlin under Hans-Christoph Rademan is spirited stuffin every way – imaginative scorings, energetic counterpoint, operatic intensity, gripping liturgical presence. It blew me away.

REBECCA TAVENER Read the full review on Agora Classica


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